Thursday, February 09, 2006

Ritchie Rich

One of the early stories which earned Whispers its rep as the Scoophaus for Most Things Vatican came last August, when these pages announced that Msgr. Eugene Clark had resigned as Rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York after a rumoured sex scandal occasioned a public brouhaha.

At the time, no word came immediately on Clark's succession, and Associate Rector Msgr. John Ferry was left in place as Interim Rector. At hearing Ferry's name uttered by Egan's lugubrious baritone over Christmas, I thought the mid-50ish monsignor had quietly gotten the permanent nod.

Apparently not:

The Rev. Robert T. Ritchie, a pastor from the Bronx, was appointed rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral yesterday. The appointment by Cardinal Edward M. Egan is to take effect next week, filling a post that has been empty since August, when the former rector, Msgr. Eugene V. Clark, 79, resigned amid accusations that he was having an affair with his longtime personal secretary. Monsignor Clark was not suspended, but voluntarily agreed not to say Mass or celebrate the sacraments in public. Father Ritchie, 60, has been the pastor of Our Lady of Angels Church, in a heavily Hispanic parish, since 2002. He also was the regional vicar of the Northwest Bronx. Before going to the Bronx, he was the pastor of St. Catherine of Genoa in Manhattan.
Elsewhere on the New York beat, we eagerly await the long-dreaded reconfiguration lists, which were supposed to be delivered last month....

Tip to Jim Mac.