Accused bishop named to Vatican council

Bishop Walter Mixa

Bishop Walter Mixa

April 2, 2012

Pope Benedict has named a German bishop who had been accused of financial irregularities and hitting children to the Vatican's health care council.

Retired Bishop Walter Mixa of Augsburg was named a member of the Pontifical Council for Health Care Ministry March 21.

It is the 70-year-old bishop's first appointment to a Vatican dicastery.

He served as the bishop of Augsburg and the German Military Ordinariate until he resigned in 2010.

Mixa's resignation was accepted a few weeks after he offered it, after accusations surfaced that he had hit children during his time as a priest in charge of a children's home near Augsburg.

First, he denied the claims, then admitted he had perhaps "boxed the ears" of some of his wards.

Mixa also faced accusations of misappropriation of funds from the children's home.

German prosecutors also investigated Mixa for alleged sexual abuse of a minor when he was bishop of Eichstatt from 1996 to 2005, but dropped the investigation for lack of evidence.