September 26, 2011
Fr. Frank Pavone

Fr. Frank Pavone

Father Frank Pavone, one of the most visible and vocal opponents of abortion in the U.S., has been suspended from active ministry outside the Diocese of Amarillo, Texas, over financial questions about his operation of Priests for Life.

"My decision is the result of deep concerns regarding his stewardship of the finances of the Priests for Life (PFL) organization," Amarillo Bishop Patrick Zurek wrote in a Sept. 9 letter to other U.S. bishops.

"The PFL has become a business that is quite lucrative which provides Father Pavone with financial independence from all legitimate ecclesiastical oversight."

Zurek said "persistent questions and concerns" from clergy and laity about how the "millions of dollars in donations" the organization has received are being spent led to the action.

The bishop also asked Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, to return to Amarillo "to spend time in prayer and reflection."

Pavone told Catholic News Service that he was returning to Amarillo and planned to continue functioning as a priest there.

"I am going (to the diocese) and my (priestly) faculties are fully intact and I'm in good standing."