A recent letter from Bishop Patrick Zurek to members of the diocese of Amarillo, Texas, states that Priests for Life President Frank Pavone “remains suspended” from activities outside his diocese.
Despite efforts from other members of the anti-abortion rights movement to end the suspension, Zurek said in a public statement recently that Pavone “is to remain in the Diocese for an indefinite period of time for prayer and reflection.”
Pavone’s suspension was announced earlier last month over allegations of “financial improprieties.” Zurek wrote in his first letter announcing the suspension that his “decision is the result of deep concerns regarding his stewardship over the finances of the Priests for Life (PFL) organization. The PFL has become a business that is quite lucrative which provides Father Pavone with financial independence from all legitimate ecclesiastical oversight.”
LifeSiteNews spoke with Fr. Pavone today about the letter. “The diocese is saying two things at the same time,” Fr. Pavone said. “They are saying that I’m a priest in good standing [may practice priestly ministry] and yet they are saying that I’m suspended.”
Fr. Pavone noted that his canon lawyer was “trying to make sense” of those two seemingly contradictory statements.
For his part, Pavone said, “I’m patiently waiting to get clarification.”
Speaking for the Diocese of Amarillo, Deacon Floyd Ashley told LifeSiteNews that suspension means that Pavone “has no faculties outside the diocese of Amarillo.”
Pavone has been a prominent figure in the anti-abortion movement. He has taken part in the racially charged “pro-life freedom rides” demonstration and has accused Planned Parenthood of “targeting the abortion of black babies.” He said the chain of women’s clinics “is eager and willing to cover up the prostitution enslavement of young girls — including minorities — so long as they make money doing it.”
He has also recently compared supporting abortion rights to supporting terrorism.