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Miami priest forced to quit after angry parishioners tar him with ‘slanderous gossip’

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A dispute between a Miami priest and his parishioners culminated in the priest resigning after churchgoers undertook an investigation into alleged improprieties on his part, the Miami Herald reported.

Archbishop Thomas Wenski announced in a letter late last week that Father Pedro Corces was asked to step down from his position at St. Rose of Lima. But Wenski also criticized the group behind the probe, accusing them of engaging in “slanderous gossip, calumny, [and] detraction — all sinful behaviors — [which] have fomented division in the parish and school communities.”

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The group of parishioners, which is calling itself Christifidelis, hired a private investigator to look into Corces’ activities after the priest announced that a group of nuns from the Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary would be leaving St. Rose next month.

The investigator’s findings were presented to Wenski in a 129-page report accusing Corces of replacing St. Rose’s maintenance staff with “a felon and prostitute, Santeria practitioners, promiscuous gay practitioners and people who openly mock the Catholic faith.”

The report also accused Corces of engaging in “frequent, lavish trips and dinners” with a maintenance worker.

“Much of the material which the group has chosen to circulate via emails and the media is old, long since discredited gossip,” Wenski wrote in his letter. “Some is false, such as allegations that background checks were not done or waived; or some is misleading, such as the speculation about reasons for increases in [school] tuition.”

However, he added, his office was investigating allegations that Corces socialized inappropriately with parish employees and made Facebook posts against school guidelines.

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Despite Corces’ departure, attorney Rosa Armesto, who is representing Christifidelis, criticized Wenski’s letter.

“It’s such a shameful letter. The archbishop is not upset at what the priest has done but that it has been uncovered,” she said. “The church isn’t upset by the sins of their priests but by the fact that the faithful have had the audacity, the temerity, to bring this up.”

[h/t The Friendly Atheist]

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2020 Election

William Barr made it clear this week that he’d sign off on a sham investigation into the Dems’ 2020 nominee

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Welcome to another edition of What Fresh Hell?, Raw Story’s roundup of news items that might have become controversies under another regime, but got buried – or were at least under-appreciated – due to the daily firehose of political pratfalls, unhinged tweet storms and other sundry embarrassments coming out of the current White House.

A perfect storm propelled New York's sleaziest real estate developer to an Electoral College victory in 2016 despite winning three million fewer votes than his opponent, but Nate Silver made a compelling argument that the letter James Comey sent to Congress just 11 days before Election Day announcing that the FBI was re-opening its probe into Hillary Clinton's emails was decisive.

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Bill Barr is serving notice to DOJ officials that he’ll ruin them if they investigate Trump: MSNBC host

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An MSNBC discussion about Bill Barr running interference within the Justice Department for Donald Trump ended with "AM Joy" host Joy Reid suggesting that the attorney general's very public "media blitz" over the so-called "Horowitz Report" is a warning shot to anyone in the DOJ who thinks about investigating the president.

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Stefanik voters turning on GOP lawmaker after she threw away her credibility to defend Trump

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Over the course of the impeachment hearings, Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) has gone from a relative backbencher who sells herself as a moderate to voters in Upstate New York, to a theatrical partisan grandstanding for President Donald Trump and a top target of ire from Democrats.

But according to Politico, at least some of her voters appear turned off by her new stance.

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