Priest Kicked Out of Parish for Fathering Child

Roman Catholic priests pledge a vow of celibacy and seminary students are expected to abide by the same principles.

Thursday, Jan 19, 2012  |  Updated 8:40 AM EDT
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A newly ordained Roman Catholic priest in upstate New York was kicked out of his parish after church officials learned he fathered a child while he was a student at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Yonkers.

Regional Bishop Dominick Lagonegro told parishioners he and Cardinal-Designate Timothy Dolan had believed 34-year-old Father Casmir Manyonyo Mung’aho fathered the child prior to entering the seminary when they installed him at St. Stephen in Orange County.

Then church officials learned he had fathered the child as a first-year seminary student and removed him. Roman Catholic priests pledge a vow of celibacy and seminary students are expected to abide by the same principles.

“We are letting you know this so that you know that we are being honest and straightforward with you,” Lagonegro told St. Stephen parishioners during Sunday Mass.

The New York Times said it was unable to reach Father Mung’aho for comment.

The Tanzania native moved to the United States about six years ago and had been serving as an assistant priest at the parish before he was ordained nine months ago, according to the paper.

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