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Independent review board finds allegations to be unsubstantiated
Following independent investigations and review and recommendation by the independent review board of the Diocese of Buffalo concerning allegations which the diocese determined to be unsubstantiated, Bishop Michael W. Fisher has accepted the IRB’s recommendations and has reinstated the following priests who were previously placed on administrative leave:
√ The Rev. Adolph Kowalczyk, pastor of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in Orchard Park
√ The Rev. Gregory Dobson, who is retired but continues to assist in various parishes of
√ The Rev. Matt Nycz, pastor of SS. Peter and Paul in Williamsville
√ The Rev. Monsignor James G. Kelly, 83, a retired priest of the Diocese of Buffalo, but
who continues to assist in parish ministry.
A press release stated, “The diocese followed its rigorous policies and protocols in dealing with the allegations in question, including notifying the Erie County District Attorney’s office. In addition, diocesan attorneys reached out to the attorneys for the plaintiffs, and the diocese confronted each of the accused priests, all of whom denied ever committing any acts of abuse. Father Kowalczyk, Father Dobson and Father Nycz were all accused by the same individual, whose attorney informed the diocese that his client would not cooperate with the investigation or provide information beyond the general accusation. The allegations against Msgr. Kelly were also found to be unsubstantiated.”
The Diocese of Buffalo encourages any person who wishes to report an instance of sexual abuse or sexual harassment by a member of the clergy, diocesan employee or volunteer to contact the victim’s assistance coordinator at 716-895-3010 or Jacqueline.jo[email protected]. For a more extensive overview of resources, go to: https://www.buffalodiocese.org/abuse-response.
In response, attorney Jeff Anderson said, “There they go again. No wonder there are nearly 1000 claims in the Diocese of Buffalo bankruptcy, they just don’t get it. The diocese has again failed to do the right thing and believe survivors.”
Anderson’s firm, Jeff Anderson & Associates, along with Buffalo attorney Steve Boyd, represent over 380 survivors in the Diocese of Buffalo.
“I wish I was shocked and surprised,” Anderson said. “Everything that this diocese has done is typical. They continue to choose to do the wrong thing in the wrong way. They have a lot to learn.”