Laws and Liabilities

Laws and Liabilities

In what has proven an eventful week at the diocese, Fr. James DeOreo yesterday brought a new lawsuit for defamation which names Fr. Theodore Dudzinski and the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana as defendants.

This story has been followed closely by our friends at Corpus Christi for Unity and Peace (CUP) since Fr. DeOreo’s suspension from priestly ministry in 2022. CUP will be assembling some further resources, which they’ve kindly agreed to share with us in a day or so.

In the meantime, we’ll attempt to summarize this very complicated situation insofar as we understand it, by breaking it into ten points.

1. Original Allegations: Fr. DeOreo was accused in 2021 of having induced anorexia in a minor Zionsville parishioner, as today’s filing states, “by encouraging him to fast and engage in other spiritual and ascetic practices, eventually causing the Complainer to suffer an eating disorder.”

2. A diocesan investigation was conducted, led by an independent investigator, Kurt Wolf, from January 28, 2021 until February 20, 2021, which found the allegation unsubstantiated, that DeOreo had not in fact caused the eating disorder, and that no abuse had occurred. DeOreo was placed on leave during the investigation and was returned to active ministry upon its satisfactory conclusion.

3. Therapy Sessions: The sequence of events which followed is rather involved. The complaint filed today states that, though the case was closed after the investigation, the diocese funded psychotherapy sessions for the accuser. Fr. Theodore Dudzinski was present at these sessions between February and September of 2021.

Fr. DeOreo alleges that Fr. Dudzinski repeatedly prompted the young person on multiple occasions “that the Diocese would be inclined to either reopen the investigation, or initiate a new investigation if Complainer’s allegations were of a sexual nature,” including the possibility of monetary compensation for the accuser were this to occur, “regardless of the veracity of those allegations.”

DeOreo further alleges that Dudzinski “harbored significant ill will toward DeOreo and believed that an allegation of sexual abuse by Complainer would provide a basis for terminating DeOreo’s employment.”

Various specific incidents of this alleged pattern and the dates on which they are believed to have occurred, are cited in yesterday’s filing, which may be examined here along with statements by Dudzinski that DeOreo argues misrepresented a number of facts to the Complainer. Among these was inducing him to believe falsely that DeOreo was no longer permitted to be in the presence of minors.

4. Second Investigation: Ultimately, following these therapy sessions, allegations of “grooming” were made, though it was made clear by the accuser that no contact of a sexual nature had ever occurred. The accuser retained an attorney to seek monetary compensation from the diocese. A second investigation by Wolf, attorney Barry Loftus, and the diocesan Review Board then took place, which “found no evidence to substantiate the allegations or to support the assertion that the alleged behavior constituted sexual abuse.”

5. Misrepresentations: DeOreo’s suit alleges that Dudzinski led the Complainer and his family falsely to believe, among other things, that DeOreo was forbidden to be anywhere minors were present.

The filing asserts:

“On or about November 9, 2021, and in reliance upon Dudzinski’s representations and impressions that DeOreo had violated a restriction against being in the presence of minors, Complainer sent an email to the Diocese complaining about DeOreo’s presence at a service with children present.”

It goes on to say:

From and after September 28, 2021, without divulging his efforts during August and September to encourage the Complainer to make the new Allegations, Dudzinski operated to hide, obfuscate, or destroy the findings of Review Board and acted to intentionally create the false impression in Diocesan leadership, including Bishop Timothy Doherty, that Complainer’s new allegations were credible, actionable, or otherwise harmful to the Diocese.

On the basis of these, the diocese would issue a decree in November to initiate another inquiry by Wolf and Loftus (though it’s unclear that this was completed) during which time DeOreo would not be permitted to work in youth ministry or with parishioners of St. Alphonsus where the accuser’s family resided.

When DeOreo would later be seen in March with friends at their child’s athletic event, a report would be made to the diocese incorrectly asserting that DeOreo had violated restrictions, and it would be misrepresented to Bishop Doherty that DeOreo was in violation of the November Decree.

6. Suspension: Fr. DeOreo was then suspended from all active priestly ministry by Bishop Doherty in March 2022, was evicted from his lodgings in Carmel and forbidden to live within Howard, Boone, or Hamilton Counties. Doherty corroborates that the suspension occurred because he believed that DeOreo violated the November Decree.

7. Civil Suit: As many are aware, Fr. DeOreo then brought a civil suit for defamation against his accuser, during the course of which his legal team secured from the diocese (not without difficulty, as the diocese initially refused to share these) the documents and information that formed the basis of Fr. DeOreo’s suspension from ministry, including information pertaining to the psychotherapy sessions at which Fr. Dudzinski had been present.

This case was settled, with the terms and amount of damages awarded to Fr. DeOreo remaining confidential. [Edited: an earlier version of this article read “the court found…” rather than “The case was settled.”]

8. No Immanent Return to Ministry: It was hoped by many that upon the successful resolution of this case, that Fr. DeOreo would be permitted to return to active priestly ministry.

This has not occurred. Now this further legal recourse seeks recompense for the irreparable damage to DeOreo’s name, in the sum of ten million dollars. (Yes, you read that correctly.)

9. Yesterday’s lawsuit alleges:

  • Firstly: Defamation of Fr. DeOreo by the diocese, which in writing falsely stated the reason of the suspension & falsely intimated abuse, and misused canon law in a way that would imply a full canonical procedure had been conducted and had pointed to guilt when this had not occurred. Details of the case were prematurely shared with media in a fashion that violated canon law, gave rise to further slanders in the media, and no retraction or clarification has been released by the diocese to rectify any of the damage caused.

  • Secondly: Fraud on the part of Fr. Theodore Dudzinski with respect to making knowingly false and misleading claims that have caused damage; that Dudzinski’s actions constitute fraud pursuant to Indiana’s criminal statute, I.C.§35-43-5-4, and additionally constitute common law fraud.

10. Thoughts: We’ve debated for a few reasons how best to cover this matter, but it has exposed such serious concerns in the functioning of our diocese, regardless of this new action’s outcome, that it seems important to lay this out. There is a sense of spiritual heaviness and tragic failure in the fact that matters have ever reached this stage and have been handled as they have, to the ruin of so many things.

Be fortified by the knowledge that God hears our prayers for our diocese and is our justice and our hope.

And be judicious in your thoughts and comments.

Update from Corpus Christi for Unity & Peace:

CUP has provided a precis of this current and past legal actions pertaining to Fr. DeOreo, and compiled much additional information about this situation from Fr. DeOreo’s attorney. They also have multiple action points, resources, and links for anyone wishing to be involved. I encourage you to view this information here.


182 Replies to “Laws and Liabilities”

  1. WOW – really WOW. Big news and developments on the Father DeOreo case (06C01-2403-PL-000386). Check out https://public.courts.in.gov/mycase/ and search for Dudzinski or case 06C01-2403-PL-000386. Court date set for June 28th. Read the documents Father DeOreo’s lawyer dropped on the courts this week. Truly eye opening and disturbing.

    3
    1. ….and also not surprising.

      You see what people are really made of when they’re taken out of their pampered, insulated, unaccountable cocoons.

      May justice prevail for Fr. DeOreo!

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    2. Can anyone give a brief summary for those of us who can’t easily understand all the legalize? Please and Thank You! Prayers on going for all of this craziness!!!

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        1. By looking at Bishop Doherty deposition, it either he throws his priest, the prior victor general or Fr.DeOreo under the bus. Hopefully Fr.DeOreo and Archbishop Thompson investigate the corruption that going on in our Diocese. Then Fr,DeOreo can be a priest in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis.

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  2. What is the status of this Fr. DeOreo lawsuit? After a flurry of filings and counter filings it seems to have gone quiet. Any updates?

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    1. It’s ongoing … you can read all the filings at tippecanoe county court records. Hearing set for June 28

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  3. Heard all the chancery employees have been ordered by Ted to attend an indoctrination day on the new mission of the diocese that led to Mass terminations. More outsiders being paid big bucks to tell the peons what they do wrong rather than addressing the root of the problem.

    Seems to me what the bishop and his team need is some training on toxic management and building a strong trust based culture. Now that would be time well spent especially for Ted.

    Toxic management is distinguished by micromanagement, withholding information, playing favorites, dividing to control, viewing employees only as resources, yelling, bullying and otherwise mistreating people. Can anyone assign a name to these traits?

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      1. I used to be sad when fewer faces appeared on the annual seminarian posters, but not anymore. I’m happy for the young men that have wisely discerned, after surveying the VG’s devastation of this diocese, that “nope, not for me..” is the way to go. My desire to not see more shattered, disillusioned, lonely, maladjusted and victimized priests is now far greater than my selfish desire to have easy future access to the sacraments on my time schedule. Priests are not just sacramental vending machines. They are human beings. And this diocese dehumanizes them. The Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana honestly does not deserve a single seminarian.

        And for those that think the “next bishop” will magically fix everything, I’ve got a highly-profitable retreat center in Tipton to sell you.

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        1. Meanwhile next weekend the Archdiocese of Indy has three going to be ordained as priests, diocese of Fort Wayne South Bend will have two newly ordained priests. Diocese of Lafayette nobody. Maybe turn this Retreat Center into a Seminary.

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  4. @… That the sad part and why the Diocese so be changed. The same way with sw Benton county parishes that have only one pastor and six parishes. Rochester and Wilmac are close to the Diocese of Ft Wayne South Bend that they should merge with them than make a pastor have so much responsibility for six parishes which only two or three held regular masses.

    This is a problem where we need to question should that I keep trying to answer. We need spilt the Diocese up with the other Diocese and the Archdiocese.

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    1. I’m down with that so long as Fr. Ted is permanently assigned to the empty Tipton Center just before the new bishop closes it.

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  5. It’s official. What a tough sentence for the cathedral. Good luck one and all. We’ll need it. They probably better brief us now about the media who will be watching us.

    Thank you Fr. Rowland for these past years with us.

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    1. Our Lady Undoer of Knots, pray for us!

      May your Son deliver us of the burdens our diocese leaders have placed on us.

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    2. I don’t understand why move Father Rowland from being rector/pastor of the Cathedral to being a pastor of five parishes. for him and all priests!

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          1. True, however they are still in the “parish Boundaries” since they will be merged. He is responsible for the souls there. People die and need anointed it’s up to him. One of those towns has a nursing home with Catholic Residents. There are cemeteries in each of the towns that have “potential closures” even one from an Old closure in Medaryville not to mention the souls that are left there if someone is dying. All of those cemeteries are still Church Property meaning the pastor is responsible for and people are still buried there even though their parishes don’t have Sunday Mass. Still a lot of Driving even if Mass isn’t taking place in these parishes. Pulaski to Rochester is about 30-40 Minutes depending on your driving style:) One office in Winamac. Another in Rochester. Let’s not forget about the Hispanic community in Akron which is 15 minutes East of Rochester if someone needs anointing there. Say the Priest lives at Pulaski (nicest rectory in the pastorate) and Father Faker the senior associate is out Sick or on Vacation or needed elsewhere and the priest living in Pulaski has to drive from his home to Akron…. Trust me I know on a very personal Level that it is a lot and I mean a lot of Driving and very stressful even with 3 of the 6 parishes not having a Sunday Mass.

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        1. Still probably easier than being talked down to by Fr. Ted. All the priests saw it at a meeting. Fr. Ted’s always right all the time. All the time Fr. Ted’s always right.

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  6. Well we heard last night that all the clergy changes will be announced this weekend. Seems we’re safe but we heard from our pastor that

    – the rumor is that Fr. Ted will be the new pastor of the cathedral.

    If true, what a disaster. And again – a real in your face move.

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    1. If this news is true that this weekend is announcement of priest transfers, wonder how many changes will be made. Wonder which parishes or “pastorate” are effected. How many churches will have to closed because of limited masses. It’s going to be a interesting weekend indeed.

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        1. Maybe he could be given a life-sized plush, priest-doll that he could ignore, bully, and throw things at. He could deny “Fr. Squishy” requests of any kind, give him the worst assignments, make unreasonable demands, and talk down to him constantly. This might be a real game-changer for stress-relief for the VG.

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      1. I doubt there will be any changes in the Hamilton County parishes as usual… oops I mean “pastorates.”

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        1. Or which pastorate is going to lose a priest and lose more masses. I’m guessing Anderson and Marion.

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        2. In Muncie I suppose we’ll have the same sluggish slow boring leadership we’ve had since 2020.

          Where are those missionary pastors we were supposed to be getting? We get weird humor that’s not even funny. #oddball

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          1. At least it better than the nearby pastorate where we are still going thru “what happened to all our money that supposedly goes to the parishes”.

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      1. Funny to how nepotism works in the Diocese. If this news is true that will make the second priests brothers that live in the same city controlling all city parishes. Doerr of Carmel and Dukuski of Lafayette. Wonder if the Aaron brothers soon to follow.

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        1. It is notable, but I do not think it is a conspiracy. In my experience, Frs. A. and T. Dudzinski are as different as brothers can be in terms of how they deal with people.

          1. I agree they probably do act different but the thing about nepotism is still there. Fr.Ted is also the Victor General. Fr.Andrew is the dean of the West deanery, Fr.Brian is the pastor of the largest church of our Diocese (so far) and now two of the brothers are both pastors of both of the pastorate of the city of Lafayette. The other Controversy would be if someone wanted to switch pastorate because of Fr.Ted they would have to leave Lafayette because he brother is the pastor of the other pastorate.

            Im all for family being close but im all for fairness too.

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    2. It’s true. Heard the announcement tonight at 4pm mass tonight. Our two priests are leaving and he’s moving in – with two additional priests. Does that mean it will take three to replace the two – or are we getting a backup in case he has to leave ?

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        1. It was announced at our Mass we are losing Father Matthew in the Anderson pastorate to St. Mary in Lafayette and Father Christian DeCarlo coming to us.

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  7. Got my “Catholic Ministries, Tipton Center Life-Support, and Defamation Lawsuit Appeal” pledge card today! And like a good Catholic, I threw it in the trash!

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    1. Doubt Francis would do anything in that situation. If a fact Francis ideas are the problem itself for the church right now.

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      1. Please don’t look to Rome. This is a crisis of immense proportion and we aren’t going to get help except from Heaven. I love my parish, but not how it is being run, which is into the ground. We don’t get parish…or pastorate….. minutes, we have no idea what is going with the finance council or how our money is being spent or if our own parish even gets to spend it. Does the weekly collection get sent to Lingle Ave to disperse as it sees fit or does someone at our parish pay the bills? Is my pastor accountable for where the money goes? He certainly hasn’t been forthcoming to those of us in the pews. We never get any information from our pastorate office. Does anyone else out there? We don’t live in the very blessed Hamilton County but rather too close to Lingle Avenue and it feels like a blanket of deception at this point. Life since July 2020 has been extremely hard for all of us as well as the men who want to be good priests to us, and we all live under this oppressive rule of the bishop and VC. Considering that it is the people in the pews who give the money the parish needs to operate, why are pastors so reluctant to talk to us? Or are there actually priests out there who are talking to their people about what is going on? Does your pastor talk to you? I would be interested to know how others are treated.

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        1. Our pastor seems literally scared to death to give any detail that first hasn’t been cleared by the bishop’s/vicar general’s office. Everyone seems like they’re “sheltering in place” till Bishop Doherty is gone. Our pastorate too is falling into decay.

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          1. The leadership is nothing more than dispensers of life. They dispense life when and where they want to, and take away life when and where they want to. It’s the way animals are treated in a zoo by their keepers.

            Only the animals are treated better than our keepers treat us – the priests and laity…

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  8. The basics again: this diocese is being run into the ground and bankrupted. Everyone who has ever read a post on here knows who’s doing it.

    The bishop is frozen. He does what he’s “told” to do because he’s too weak to govern. Even narcissists can be weak.

    But beware of narcissists with power. They run dioceses/parishes/clergy/ into the ground.

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      1. Maria as much as we want our Diocese to survive and Prosper the Controversies and the current state of our Diocese is questionable at best. Even with a new Bishop the damage might be too much for a Diocese that mostly depends on Hamliton County and Lafayette for support. In reality the future for the Catholic Church in the United States is to merger Diocese together.

        This Diocese was created in the 40’s/early 50’s of the Diocese of Fort Wayne/South Bend because of the growing Catholic population. Since then parishioners numbers are declining every year to new lows. Vocations numbers aren’t being met.(This year we don’t even a Permanent Deacon being ordained to the priesthood and we use to had someone ordained every year. I think one next year and I haven’t heard any others.

        As much as I want this Diocese to be here til our Lord comes in Glory, in reality it’s looking grim. People are being layoff in the chancery because the Diocese can’t afford this stuff and currently a lawsuit is pending for Fr.DeOreo issue. In all reality the only answer to Rearrange our province so there are four Diocese in the State of Indiana.

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        1. Ah, yes…the fruits of the Second Vatican Council coming to roost at another diocese near you. It was all by design ages ago.

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  9. Diocesan Offices reorganize themselves for mission and economic challenges……..I read this article in the Catholic Moment today! Why is no one seeing the reality of what is really happening in this Diocese? Uniting in Heart 2030 Pastoral Plan is not working!!. When the parish family you loved and you gave generously to for years, is ripped apart and now there is no family, you stop giving! Now the parishes get back the ownership of programs that fit our needs. We were fine before control was ripped away to be controlled by the Diocese. It is just so sad as the shuffling continues to try to find something that will ………what? I have run into so many friends throughout different parishes who have shared that they just don’t fit anywhere! Pray for peace of mind and heart! Small groups are forming to support one another to keep our spirits up and pray for that this craziness stops soon! Someday the leadership in this Diocese will figure this out!

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    1. Don’t count on it. I hope you are right, but my experience of the past three years suggests otherwise. I have no parish home, and I am too old to move. Still pray and watch Mass on TV as mobility is limited now, and I seldom drive. Only hear from the parish when they need money.
      God is still where He was, but the parish I loved is gone.

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      1. I doubt our Diocese would ever recover. Like I said in countless post the best outcome for our Diocese is to split it up with the other Diocese and Archdiocese in the state.

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  10. Can someone tell me why TED has not been removed from his duties and been put in some type of leave of absence?

    Shouldn’t he been given the same treatment as those he has punished and disciplined in the past?

    Why was he at the Chrism mass still performing the duties of a priest? A bit hypocritical ?

    There’s a bishop reporting line of the bishop becomes compromised. What happens when the VG is compromised and the bishop is a wet brick and does nothing when a report shows that TED knowingly hired a child groomer into the church and school of Kokomo?

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    1. Basically Ted asked Ted if he should step down and Ted told Ted that he should stay put. Ted then thanked Ted for the sage advice and complimented Ted on being such a great guy.

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    2. I was watching yesterday thinking the same thing. It’s so “in your face.”

      It’s also so abusive…

      And let’s not forget…we’re going bankrupt because of Fr. Ted’s relentless spending on the retreat center.

      He has to go.

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    3. Father Ted is a good priest. He has been devoted to the priesthood and very caring to so many people. A Shepherd to his Flock.
      Yes there are issues that need to be settled but to continually degrade him is so unchristian. Can you not say a prayer for all priests and especially Father Ted.

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        1. Ted doesn’t stop his ego, cruelty, favoring of pedophiles and financial ineptness for any liturgical season. I pray for justice – if that means his downfall, so be it

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          1. But of all day Good Friday when our Lord die for you, for me and for “Ted”. The attack aren’t that different than the temple priests shouting “ Crucify Him” to Jesus. Now I argee Father Ted Duduski isn’t running good as a VG and I don’t know how he got it since he has two other brothers as priests in the Diocese but to attack somebody on a day that we should pause and reflect on the death of our Lord is pretty Despicable. Good day to you sir or ma’am and pray for your soul.

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      1. Seems like you’re more concerned about TED than the actual victims. Shame on you. I’ll pray for you.

        You’re obviously blinded and not seeing clearly. People need to be held accountable for their actions. It’s our duty to hold people accountable. Wake up. Do you think TED would show mercy for those if the situation was the other way around? No, and he has a proven track record to show that.

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  11. The real reason the bishop is in this lawsuit is his disdain for EXODUS 90. EXODUS 90 was started by a priest of our diocese who the bishop and Ted also do not like. They did not support it so the bishop of Ft Wayne gave EXODUS 90 a home. As we know EXODUS 90 has been very successful. All our bishop talks about concerning EXODUS 90 is cold showers and how weird that is in his view point. So when the boy came forward claiming problems from EXODUS 90 the bishop believed him from the start. If the boy can’t handle EXODUS 90 how does he handle the fasting of Lent? I mean really. Now I hear the bishop and Ted can think of nothing but this lawsuit and are doing very little else but wring their hands, sending emails, calling in lawyers, and circling wagons. This lawsuit is going to be very interesting as it unfolds.

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  12. Recent updates available on this case reflect that the same attorney/firm is representing both the diocese and Father Ted. Was legal representation, at diocese expense, ever afforded to Father DeOreo and other priests who were accused of wrongdoing? No. They were thrown to the wolves to fend for themselves (along with a plethora of restrictions related to their priestly duties). So why does Father Ted, who has been accused of very serious offenses, and named as an individual defendant, entitled to “parishioner-funded” legal defense???

    https://public.courts.in.gov/mycase/Case/Document/?token=hVkJgDN40APXALFIPOpdnTINXrukdOBu–IXgB_5FSVt00lk7cwWH8TORmOFkEtEzgJTflqzzh3AkILti8JBvA1URVji3PwN-RmM5D6wYDglUky9SHtoPK9wlhFsLPQklk1C-DMV0ciCQOJrWMwSk3Obaqw1R334ARekr_6UFK9nuTUyC9Dx64uNElpzMgD_Kpes4trjaHtHKyYnJXv5wMPsqWhhG8PGBI0F1UIeTQg1

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  13. How often did the bishop tell his priests that he didn’t want to leave the Diocese in a mess for his successor?

    How’s that going Bishop Doherty?

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    1. What kills me is that Bp Higi worked hard to create the highly successful Fruitful Harvest fundraising campaign and it’s all for naught now. Ted and the bishop should be ashamed of the mess they’ve created for the entire diocese!

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      1. Until his ad limina visit to the Vatican Bishop and his visit to Lanciano, Bishop Higi was a full blown member of the Hesburgh-Bernardin generation and mindset who systematically destroyed the beauty of almost every church in the Diocese of Lafayette-in-Indiana.

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      2. This is actually one of the great ironies of this whole mess: That our diocese is being systematically destroyed – not by a modernist bishop (which we certainly do have) – but by a supposed faithful and orthodox priest (the VG); A person formed in that generally well-meaning charismatic-orthodoxy of John Paul II’s “new evangelization”.

        For a modernist bishop sympathetic to bringing the church down several notches so that it can better swim in the world’s sewage, the VG is a dream: For virtually no work at all, you get to bring the church down and humiliate “trads” all with one of their own! The irony is rich indeed!

        I can see now why the bishop isn’t interested in retiring early. He’s having too much fun watching the “new evangelization” destroy itself.

        5
  14. Word is the mood in the chancery is worse than ever. Many are looking for other jobs and looking over their shoulder. No one from HR nor the Bishop have addressed employees to talk about the mass terminations or lawsuit. More of the same poor management we’ve seen up there for years. Such poor leadership.

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    1. Assuming diocesan leadership has the cash to pay the defamation settlement, I have little doubt they will pay to make everything go away. It would be out of character for them not to. Short of divine intervention, pride will force them to pay the settlement. After all, it’s not their money; and in their minds they are too important to have their “church-saving” work slowed down by some uppity young priest with a good legal team. No, they will declare bankruptcy and blame someone else before they ever admit that they made a mistake. At this point, they can’t help themselves.

      This lawsuit business feels like a final warning from the Almighty to them; and it’s usually best to get out of the Landlord’s way when He comes calling on delinquent tenants…

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      1. I think we should all remember this… Since the Ministries Appeal nonsense (to pay off the ridiculous retreat center), never worked, the only recourse they have after declaring bankruptcy, or even before they declare bankruptcy, is start taxing all the parishes. A tax will be levied, and the parish will have to pay or go under. Spiritual blackmail…

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        1. They already tax the parishes. The dioceses have always taxed the parishes. At one point they started going directly to the people to give the money upfront, giving the tax a fancy name and offering rebates. But it’s always been a tax.

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        2. Like I said the endgame would be to split the Diocese and have the surrounding Diocese and Archdiocese take the remaining parishes and priests. Our Diocese is really outdated and I think reconfiguration might be needed in the future.

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      2. I think Pride will keep them from settling. I am SURE that a settlement will require some acknowledgment of wrongdoing. And that is something that our Bishop and VG are incapable of doing.

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    2. I’ve heard the mood has been bad since 2014 in the chancery and across the diocese and we all know who moved from Kokomo to Lafayette in late 2013….

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  15. At this time of great uncertainty and upheaval, it seems it is imperative we flood our Adoration chapels and Churches and pray for our diocese and especially our priests!

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  16. Does anyone have any idea why our local media has not picked up this story? Outcome aside, this is a huge scandal happening right in their backyard. Indy news has picked it up- why are there only crickets here?

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    1. I imagine this latest scandal in the diocese will not be addressed by our priests at Mass this weekend. If it weren’t for Red Wolf Report, I doubt I would even be aware of the lawsuit.

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        1. The pastor at St Patrick mentioned the lawsuit at Mass today as part of his talk on how low the church is on CMA contributions and pledges. Big questions is does CMA go to help cover lawsuits like this one against Fr. Dudzinski. Also another question is why so few are coming to Mass. No one is coming to Mass because Uniting in Heart, another Fr Dudzinski, program maybe worse than a 30 million lawsuit has driven people away. This lawsuit gives us one more reason to stay away and keep purses closed as does his hiring of a child predator. So sad and yet the Bishop stands by Fr Dudzinski. WHY???

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          1. Don’t stay away from Church! We need Jesus now more than ever! Stay with Jesus no matter how much all us humans mess things up!

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          2. In my opinion Ted has only one agenda. Bishop!He is trying to do everything he can do to be a Bishop. I am so glad to see me and more people speak up about Ted. Priests are leaders of US the flock. Ted neglects the flock because all his agenda is getting Bishop, if not here somewhere. I truely pray that day never happens.

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    1. Sorry folks. This Dioceese has been messed up for a long time and it hurts. Our parishes in general do NOT welcome new or unfamiliar faces, don’t listen to what the parish wants… Example.. In Kokomo we have 2 parishes. St. Joan and St. Patricks. We USED to have a 6:30 Mass at atleat one parish meanwhile outside town 2 miles in the country we have the Monastesy of the Community of the Poor Clares. They also have a 6:30 Mass where the public is welcome. Our CURRENT Moderator came in and deemed there will be no 6:30 Mass except at the Poor Clares. A PERFECT example of the Dioceese letting the Priest here in Kokomo! It should be the Priest working around people not the other way around… especially when we have 4 Priests and 3 Deacons! When Ted was in Kokomo Moderating both parishes he drove St. Joan now to nubbs! We left in waves! That is Ted, either conform to my way or move on! I can say a lot more! Please pray for our Dioceese and Parishiners.

      26
      1. Kokomo doesn’t need a 6:30 Mass when they also have a 6:30 Mass for the poor Clare’s. The diocese and the pastor have every right to diminish unnecessary Mass times especially poorly attended ones as well as ones that are difficult for them to be at especially since there is a 6:30 AM Mass at the Poor Clares 2 miles to the west of St Patrick’s give or take and 3-4 miles up the road from St Joan. I suggest you quit bashing the good priests which you have been blessed to have appointed to Kokomo. I know your Masses at St Patrick’s aren’t full at every Sunday or Saturday Vigil Mass thanks to the Livestream provided by the parish. Therefore since the Masses you do have at St Patrick’s are not packed to the brim with people and there is still room for more people in the congregation it would be unnecessary to add another 6:30 Mass when once again there is already one at the Monastery.
        Have you ever considered thanking the good priests which you have in Kokomo for being there to administer the Sacraments to you? Perhaps you should be joyful that each rectory in your pastorate has priests living in them. Many parishes are not as fortunate to have so many good priests. You should count your blessings and really ask yourself. I will also say since I filled in at St Patrick’s for Mass at the organ back in 2022 I was greeted with great warmth by many parishioner’s. I felt very welcome. Keep bashing on your own parish/parishes and your priest. Let me know if we have any priests left after dealing with so many negative people over a silly 6:30 AM Mass time that you still have in Kokomo. What a joke some people are. Ungrateful to good Priests.
        And oh no you have to drive 2 miles to get to a 6:30 AM Mass…. I drive 28 miles to my parish and so do many others. I think you can drive 2 for your 6:30 AM Mass. perhaps you could learn something from the nuns. They would never want you to talk poorly about your parish priests.

        15
        1. All I know is Fr. Ted’s got to go. He’s bankrupted the diocese in many ways AND he’s been the cause of the suffering of good parish priests.

          37
          1. I realize you don’t have any personal respect for Father Ted, but he is in fact, a priest. He has given sacraments. He has absolved sins, anointed sick, consecrated the very Eucharist we celebrate. I understand you think he’s “got to go” but please make sure you are saying intentional prayers for him. We need our priests. We need them humble, holy, poor in spirit and contrite. I have had two priests leave my life for various reasons, and whether they were wrong for their misdoings, they were still blessing us and giving us sacraments and that is reason enough to pray for them. Pray for Father Ted, pray for your own heart to soften enough to humble yourself to do this. I myself struggle with this, so this is not meant to take as condescending!

            8
          1. Yes Ted is a priest but he has taken extreme advantage of his position , been horrific to many employees (me included) and is generally selfish and egotistical. He hasn’t upheld his priestly vows in many ways. I pray for all his victims – and I struggle but try to pray for him to be the man God intended him to be

            15
          2. Let’s not use the vocation or title of priest to allow a person to abuse or over look his excesses. That is what got the church into the sexual abuse problem, coverup and huge payouts. As a person, as a man, as a company officer, as a pastor and as a priest, Fr. Ted has abused his authority, broken policy, harassed and threatened employees, contributed to priests leaving or being distressed, spent more than allowed, hand picked hires, hired sexual predators, brought lawsuits upon the diocese, manipulated the Bishop and conducted himself in an unprofessional and unskilled manner. Where anyplace else would he be allowed to stay in power? Where on earth would all this be whitewashed because of his vocation? If anything his vocation and position hold him to an even higher level of conduct and higher standards. I do pray for Fr. Ted but I also pray that this lawsuit exposes officially and publicly his many abuses so that this Bishop and all the follow keep him out of leadership and keep a close eye on his conduct.

            17
  17. Folks…while this site has been helpful at both bringing light to dark spots in our diocese as well as serving as a much needed steam valve, please remember to fight the temptation of falling into the sins of gossip and calumny—if not for the sake of those mentioned, then for the sake of your own souls.

    10
      1. Also good advice this is outta of our hands now. We can discuss this case all we what but now it up to our God and our Justice System. Even though Fr Ted and Bishop Doherty aren’t favorites on this site for good reason they aren’t innocent until proven guilty in a court of law and in canon law. Same goes for Fr.DeOreo. Pray for Justice for our Diocese sake.

        4
        1. It’s always been outta our hands. Priests have a duty to protect and defend their priesthood. It appears Fr. DeOreo has the testosterone to do that.

          We should pray that all our priests will protect and defend – with all means available to them – the vocation God called them to.

          It’s long overdue! A toast to testosterone!

          55
  18. We briefly shared a post this morning that was misattributed to attorney Mike Einterz, & was actually a factual brief by an independent journo. Since it did not originate from Mr. Einterz, we’ve removed it. You can still peruse the statement on the CUP website if you wish.

    4
    1. Yeah. If the Bishop thought that this was going to blow over…… ha. He should have talked to Father DeOreo when he had the chance.

      55
      1. And it is just the legal system. Wonder what happens if the diocese is found guilty in this. Archbishop intervention which hopefully Fr.DeOreo would be a Archdiocese of Indianapolis priest.

        6
    2. There are some good sensible comments and questions in response to the article on The Pillar. Such as, why did anything so bizarre happen as to have a priest of the diocese in a person’s psychotherapy, which feels like a huge boundary issue? And that this shows good and well why you don’t bring in some consultant that runs McDonald’s corporate or something to rearrange your diocese while running roughshod over Canon Law. It just goes to show that when you get outside the the DOL, people look at this and are rightly aghast at our “new normal.” Pray hard for the deprogramming, reparation, and rebuilding it’s going to take after this.

      64
      1. Yes, it is bizarre that Fr Ted was in those psychotherapy sessions. But at least one of the therapists was someone he was friendly with and who used to work for him. It all came out in Fr. DeOreo’s previous lawsuit. Ethics, schmethics.

        65
        1. So let me get this straight. One of the therapists involved on the side of Fr. DeOreo’s accuser in this case, had previously worked for Fr. Ted?!?

          I hate to jump to conclusions, but just reading that gave me the chills. I mean especially given what this lawsuit alleges about Fr. Ted, listening in on the accuser’s therapy sessions.

          67
  19. I heard about potential suspicious activity at the bishop’s office over the weekend a day after the office was served notice of the lawsuit. Seems a vehicle was parked between the two main buildings and “items” for the office were being loaded into the vehicle and taken away. May be nothing or could be evidence being taken off premises.

    40
    1. What an AMAZING coincidence! I saw a similar vehicle just this weekend at our AMAZING parish, where we held a brand new event called “The AMAZING Pastorate Community Bonfire” and all 16 parishes in our pastorate were invited! Our AMAZING pastor told us not to worry about getting firewood, because an AMAZING diocesan staffer was bringing all the fuel we would ever need. The only strange thing is that the event was scheduled for 2am and we were told to sit about a quarter mile from the fire location for our safety because of the size of the expected bonfire. Well, a little before 2am, me and the other five AMAZING parishioners in our pastorate watched (at a distance) as a vehicle pulled up to the bonfire location. Some strange-looking (but no doubt AMAZING) person got out of the vehicle and stacked all sorts of boxes (I guess they were filled with wood) into the fire pit, doused the stack with lighter fluid (I didn’t know lighter fluid came in gas-can size), and lit it up. It was, in a word, AMAZING!

      42
      1. After reading the lawsuit and seeing how it points out that Fr Ted did not follow standard operating procedures, I believe the attorney representing Fr DeOreo should investigate and quiz Fr Ted and current/former employees about other situations where Fr. Ted decided to skip protocol, bypass procedures, and circumvent processes. We have heard about several including spending millions at the SJRCC without proper authority/approval, the sudden dismissal of the assistant architect days after offering him a job, the rollout of United in Heart, yelling at female employees, violating the personal manual code of conduct, knowingly hiring of a sex offender, and many many more. Seems to me that establishing a pattern of willful override of procedure and norms makes that fact that he did the same with DeOreo yet more believable.

        38
    2. I saw the vehicle – a bright blue jeep pulling a U-HAUL as it left the bishops office grounds. Sadly didn’t see who was driving. Better not be evidence taken away

      22
      1. I has been a while but when I used to work in the chancery and stayed late, I sometimes saw Fr Ted snooping around after hours in people’s offices and desks. I even saw him do it in the bishop’s office a time or two when the bishop was on vacation. He had Deacon Mike do it with email also. All seemed odd and dishonest to me. I’m told he did it while in Kokomo too.

        42
        1. Deacon Mike Mescall? The one who said Uniting in Heart was going to be a magical stunning multifaceted jewel, and that it would usher in an actual “New Pentecost,” turned out to be sniffing and snooping in staff emails for Fr. Ted the whole time?

          Golly, Deacon Mike, you dirty dog, you. I guess you had multiple facets yourself.

          35
          1. I mean…. I guess I don’t know who you would report it to…. but this is the sort of thing that should be reported. It is really disturbing that the VG did this. And a Deacon. How depressing. And this is what priests in our Diocese have been dealing with for years.

            33
        2. I mean…. I guess I don’t know who you would report it to…. but this is the sort of thing that should be reported. It is really disturbing that the VG did this. And a Deacon. How depressing. And this is what priests in our Diocese have been dealing with for years.

          4
        1. If that was Fr. Ted’s vehicle, could that mean he’s already resigned and the bishop is waiting to announce it for some odd reason?

          25
  20. I think the bishop must really hate the people of this diocese. Why else would he hold onto such a colossal liability like the VG unless you really just want to punish people? I don’t need to list the VG’s errors (they’re all well-documented on this site), but this lawsuit business is a massive public embarrassment for the bishop. It reveals for the whole world to see how truly inept he is. Does he not remotely care about his reputation? Or is he so close to retirement, he just doesn’t care anymore? And if it is truly indifference, then it can only be spite that drives him because any other indifferent man would just retire early and leave everything burning behind him. But he stays. Why? Does he really love presiding over bad press, finances in shambles, hate mail, and bringing the whole operation to the brink of insolvency? Who does this? Who puts a man like the VG in charge of everything, watch as the same VG ruins everything (including your own reputation), and then just sits back waiting for that 75th retirement birthday party? Out of touch just doesn’t capture it.

    39
    1. He lives in a 9 to 4 dream world and let’s the VG run everything. He brags he personally picked the VG because of how well he fixed all the problems in Kokomo. He is out of touch and a fine example of the Peter principle.

      34
    2. The Bishop I think started hating our Diocese after the announcement of Archbishop of Indianapolis didnt went to him. I really think Bishop Doherty thought he would be Archbishop of Indianapolis when Cardinal Tobin left, even to send Bishop Higi down to do the Chrism mass that one year. But when it was announces Archbishop Thompson was Archbishop i Bishop Doherty tone switch to our Diocese and he started UIH and CMA. I think Bishop Doherty is butthurt because of it.

      3
  21. Veritas Lux Mea!

    Malice is not something I see Fr. DeOreo clinging to even despite how he has been treated. What little I know personally of him, he operates on the side of seeking truth and justice. I pray he finds it.

    54
  22. I have posted previous comments, but this site is anything but just. So we are crucifying a priest – Fr. Dudzinski, because he was doing his job. Again, as I have noted, we don’t have all the facts – yet this site seems intent on tearing the Catholic Church apart by any means they can. Why?

    Are the Administrators even Catholic? They clearly don’t understand any of the principles of Catholic Social Justice, but attack with venom. I am not just questioning the attack on Fr. Ted, I am questioning the overall attack on the Catholic Church. what happened to critical thinking? Trying to find the truth? I agree the truth will set all of us free, but how many will suffer because of this thirst for vengeance? And all of the anonymous agreements speaks volumes. Did we seek answers from both sides, or were you comfortable knowing the Diocese could not comment on investigations and personnel matters?

    Dear Jesus, have mercy on us all!

    6
    1. I can’t speak for others and wouldn’t attempt to answer most of the questions you asked or accusations you made.

      I will just answer this one from my own opinion: ” were you comfortable knowing the Diocese could not comment on investigations and personnel matters?”

      Yup! I am. Do you want to know why? Because I no longer am interested in what comes out of the chancery. There is nothing else they can say that I will trust. Too many good Catholic people I know have been troubled by things going on in that office for YEARS. Too many people have been treated like garbage. I’m talking screaming, swearing, insulting etc. Do you want to talk about Social Justice Principles? Please enlighten me which ones allow a person to do that to their employees or subordinates?

      No one is getting crucified for just “doing his job.” Let’s not be disingenuous. A healthy Church that cares about the dignity of persons doesn’t close a blind eye when that dignity is being trashed from within. If you want to call that “attacking the Church” go ahead. I call it REFORM.

      87
    2. Elizabeth, in the foregoing post I’ve attempted to break down the contents of complex lawsuit, one of the largest (in monetary terms) we’ve seen in our diocese’s history. It is public, of considerable significance, and frankly shocking. Should the diocese make its own legal response publicly (which I predict it will fight not to do), I will be more than happy to break that down as well. Should I have reached out to the diocese before making this summary? You yourself say they are not permitted to comment. Have I reached out to the diocese in the past for comments on other topics? Yes and the diocese did not respond nor acknowledge receiving the query. This is because all employees were instructed by Fr. Ted Dudzinski never to reply to us and advised not to even open our site, of which I received proof. Thus, I consider my due diligence to have been done with respect to such communications.

      As I’ve answered some of your questions, please kindly answer one of mine. Certainly none of us knows the full story yet as you say. But have you considered at all the implications for the Church if what the DeOreo lawsuit alleges is true, or even the possibility that it may be true? Would it concern you if it were? And if not, why not?

      103
    3. I’m sorry, Elizabeth. Where in the Vicar General’s job description does it say to go over budget on the St. Joseph Retreat Center BY MILLIONS of dollars? What job does he have that allows him to bully, intimidate, and threaten people? Where in Catholic Social Justice does it say you can side-line a priest and slander his good name, all without following any sort of Canonical process. You can continue with your delusions that everything in this Diocese is fine and dandy… but people with eyes can see that things are completely broken.

      61
    4. “So we are crucifying a priest – Fr. Dudzinski, because he was doing his job?” Doing his job? Is his job to harass, verbally abuse, hire pedophiles, spend millions without authorization, work to stifle priests, micromanage, control all aspects of parish and a priest’s life, have employees live in fear?

      52
    5. “How many will suffer because of this thirst for vengeance” I’m not sure it’s fair to call this lawsuit a thirst for vengeance. But as to how many will suffer because of it? Well, personally, I’m hoping for two. One who egged someone on to fabricate claims of sexual harassment, and one who should have cared that it was happening but couldn’t be bothered because, jellyfish-like, he was floating in a viscous cloud of his own apathy. The shame and of course the 30 million is a big ouchy, but better, I’m guessing, than the Lake of Eternal Fire.

      45
    6. Can we just talk about the hypocrisy of this comment for a moment? You are calling people out for “crucifying a priest” when a different priest has already been crucified, slandered, drummed out of the county, and left to rot. All by his spiritual father and a fellow priest of the Diocese. Where is your concern for the priests of this Diocese who are just “doing their jobs” and get treated with contempt and thrown under the bus? Nobody on this site is “tear the Church apart”. We don’t need to- our own Bishop is doing it for us.

      35
  23. All that is hidden will be made clear.
    All that is dark now will be revealed.
    What you have heard in the dark proclaim in the light.
    What you hear in whispers proclaim to the housetops!

    57
    1. Let’s hope he is suspended but I’d be surprised if it happens. He was suspended for a few weeks at the insistence of the Archbishop when the news broke of his knowingly hiring a sex offender in Kokomo. That case has oddly gone quiet but may rear its head when travel records of Fr Ted’s and the sex offender become public. DeOreo should be reinstated and Fr Ted removed as vicar general and maybe even as a priest.

      17
  24. I honestly hope Fr. Ted reads this comment.

    When I heard about this, my heart leapt with joy. For the most part not because of Fr. DeOreo, or his courage (although I am impressed in his perseverance). I was joy-filled mostly because of the fraud claim filed against Fr. Ted Dudzinski. I hope, and think, Fr. Ted will be found guilty. Why does this make me happy? Justice.

    Fr. Ted has literally made a whole mountain of lives worse because of his toxicity. There is a pile of trauma left wherever he goes, whatever he does, despite his insistence that the Holy Spirit leads him.

    It is pure justice that God has at long last, enacted upon him. The Good Lord has evened the scales. Fr. Ted has done nothing but make me trust less that God is in control, because Fr. Ted believes he is God. Fr. Ted would make God one of his employees if he could.

    I don’t know much, but I do know this: bullying, stretching the truth (lies), nepotism, womanizing (watch him at a diocesan event. After a Cathedral Mass? You’ll see.), wrath, vanity, and a total lack of compassion are not virtuous holy things that will bring anyone closer to Christ. Fr. Ted has been a billboard – advertising that vice and cruelty are alive and well in the upper reaches of the Church. I hope it is made crystal clear to him that he has done major damage. He has hurt people. Damaged hope. I know people that avoid the Eucharist because of his actions alone. Former employees know this, we know this, all the priests of the diocese know this, the chancery knows this!

    His leadership has never been about the common good, or about making hard decisions. He likes to see people squirm. He enjoys disciplining, he likes seeing people at their lowest, he likes the power trip of accusing subordinates of (*maybe* substantiated) sin.

    It is pure justice that we’ll be able to see *him* squirm soon. If we sold tickets to his deposition, we could fund OLMCs entire budget for years to come.

    Fr. Ted has been this liar for decades; he manufactures stories about others so that he can call them into his office and scare/fire/discipline/emotionally abuse them. He hides behind a Roman Collar. But he has finally been caught doing it, in a big way. Fr. DeOreo finally stood up to him. Look at all the people giving to Fr. DeOreo’s legal fees! They believe in Fr. DeOreo, yes, but I gave because it’s time for justice. I believe Fr. Ted needs to be a defendant for once.

    Fr. Ted: You. Have. Abused. People.

    We won’t take it anymore.

    And I love justice. For you especially.

    173
    1. Justice may be slow, but it is sure.

      “If you set a trap for others, you will get caught in it yourself. If you roll a boulder down on others, it will crush you instead.”

      Proverbs 26:27

      7
  25. The abuse or at least misuse of canon law alleged in this case reminded me that the same thing was done to Fr. Rothrock. The diocese / Fr. Ted cited a different part of canon law in that case, but it was similar to DeOreo’s suspension in that suspending a priest & citing one of those canons indicates a certain canonical trial or procedure had been completed which it apparently wasn’t in either of these cases. This makes people believe the priest has been “found guilty” within the Church, following the Church’s legal procedures when he hasn’t.

    Remember when it happened to Fr. Rothrock it drew national attention because the popular author and canon lawyer J.D. Flynn called out this potential abuse? It was mentioned here on the Red Wolf also. https://theredwolfreport.com/index.php/2020/07/10/was-canon-law-followed/

    This has left me wondering about other priests who have gone through disciplinary issues under Bishop Doherty and Fr. Ted. Are there more lawsuits like this to come?!

    107
  26. We have been praying for Fr. DeOreo daily. Dear Mary, Queen of Apostles, we ask you to bring about a turn of events that allows Fr. DeOreo to return to active ministry and allow him to live out his vocation as one of your Divine Son’s priests. Help us in the battle against Evil in the Holy Catholic Church.

    69
      1. I say that because because if Fr DeOreo is found in favor of the courts and wants to go back to active ministry then he should have a choice to go to the Archdiocese of Indianapolis. If he goes back to the Diocese of Lafayette he going to be back to target number one and most likely a partioal victor at best not a pastor.

        Archbishop Thompson wouldn’t never do this. Hopefully to see Fr DeOreo in the Archdiocese soon.

        10
  27. One has to wonder why the Bishop hangs on to Fr Dudzinski given all the turmoil he has caused, money he has wasted, souls he has caused to walk away, and more. He is a bull in a china shop. His brother priests have complained, auditors have complained, women in the office complained and more. The archbishop had him removed for weeks over the hiring of a pedophile. A CFO resigned over financial impropriety at the retreat center. His central Lafayette business office is a huge failure. His Uniting in Heart has attendance and donations down. He violates standard Catholic principles in terminating several long term employees. And now he is named in yet one more law suit. Any one of these gets you fired any place else. One has to wonder what he had on Doherty.

    97
    1. Here is what he is

      “The most common behaviors you may see in toxic leaders or colleagues:

      Abuse of power
      Nepotism/favoritism
      Overly protective of those who follow them blindly
      Expectation of unquestioned loyalty
      Bullying
      Micromanaging
      Gossiping
      Deception/withholding information/exaggerating problems
      Using fear as a motivating tool
      Incapable of receiving constructive criticism
      Driven by finger-pointing”

      https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2022/08/09/identifying-toxic-leaders-and-how-to-handle-them/

      107
      1. All of the things listed above and manifested in Fr. Ted Dudzinski’s life has now brought your diocese to the brink of insolvency. People talk about it throughout your region. Now with the lawsuits probably unavoidable.

        64
        1. I’m trying to compile a list of imaginable activities of our Bishop that are more interesting to him than the fact that our Diocese has been burning down from this financial, canonical, and personal malfeasance on his watch. So far I’ve got:
          –Curled up with a good book
          –Stretching
          –Origami swan
          –Reminding us he didn’t want to come here
          –Learning harmonica
          –Yelling at people about stepladders
          –Ocean sounds
          –Sunflower garden
          –Complaining about the letters of concern people send him
          –TikTok dance practice
          –Dungeons & Dragons manual writing
          –telling priests he’s not their spiritual father
          –Sudoku
          –purging individuals who tried to bring this to his attention
          –Amateur taxidermy
          –Crest White Strips

          What did I miss?

          51
  28. The allegations in Fr. DeOreo’s lawsuit against Fr. Ted Dudzinski are very believable, given what we’ve read here for the past 4 years.

    $10M.
    1) Who will cover Fr. Ted’s legal fees? (I think we can all guess)
    2) Can I be present during HIS psychotherapy sessions?

    125
    1. $10 mil is what the defamation suit against DOL is asking.

      But the doc says the count of fraud against Dudzinski specifically is worth triple damages – $30 mil.? And he would be personally liable if he loses, not the DOL.

      Even if they just settle, this could be very costly.

      If he’s guilty of even half what DeOreo claims, he deserves it. We’ll have to wait and see if the diocese and Dudzinski have any good answers to what they’re accused of.

      76

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