Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Our Fabulous Florida Bishops, Snapshot #4

By Diogenes (articles ) | Nov 10, 2003

In March of 2002, Keith Symons's successor as Bishop of Palm Beach, Bishop Anthony O'Connell, admitted that, as a seminary rector, he "touched inappropriately in bed" a high school seminarian in the years spanning the ninth through twelfth grades. Somewhat cryptically he announced there could be "one other person of a somewhat similar situation, in a somewhat similar time frame." At the press conference following his resignation, O'Connell said, "I will have to confess that in some ways I was very misguided back in those years." He also mentioned that he'd made "wonderful Jewish friends" during his brief period in Palm Beach, as well as "wonderful friends in the Muslim community, in the Protestant community and in the civic community."

We love our bishops.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our August expenses ($21,612 to go):
$35,000.00 $13,388.44
62% 38%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Pseudodionysius - Nov. 11, 2003 12:14 AM ET USA

    It gives one pause: would a Bishop be struck by a bolt of lightning from the heavens above, if he admitted that he sinned? Think back to the 1980's televangelist scandals. By that sorry measure, Jimmy Swaggart gave a more "Catholic" confession before tv cameras than is seen here.

  • Posted by: Jdarc - Nov. 10, 2003 11:18 PM ET USA

    O'Connell went from rector to Bishop of Knoxville. He made great strides in this new diocese, setting in place guidelines & policies in this area .. measure to keep this from ever becoming an issue. Recognition of this work is what moved him to Palm Beach. Misguided in the past, I agree!! Yet I give the man credit for learning from his mistakes & taking steps when in position to do so to keep it from happening again elsewhere. Give him a little credit for trying to right a wrong.

  • Posted by: Phil - Nov. 10, 2003 5:40 PM ET USA

    Matter for confession: "I was very misguided." Sounds bad indeed. But wait! Notice the passive tense. If I "was misguided," then someone misguided me. I'm a victim!

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Difficult Decisions in the Real World 0 hours ago
The real reason why divorced/remarried German Catholics are leaving the Church 1 hours ago
An unexpected surge in confessions? August 21
The Problem with Catholic Social Teaching August 21
In Iraq, the Pope has good reason to seek intervention, but fear unilateral US action August 20

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
‘A real via crucis’: Pope Francis, patriarch plead on behalf of Iraq’s Christians CWN - August 8
Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Christians in flight as Islamic State advances CWN - August 8