The Timeline — Part 1
•On Ash Wednesday, March 9, 2011, much-loved priest, Father John Corapi, announced that he had been accused of sexual misconduct and drug abuse. The woman who accused Father Corapi of immorality and drug abuse had been a previous employee. She accused Father Corapi of engaging in a sexual relationship with her.
•Also in March, the Bishop of the Dioces of Corpus Christi instructed Father Corapi’s religious order, the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT), to appoint two disinterested priests to investigate the allegations.
•On March 18, 2011, Father Gerald Sheehan, Father Corapi’s superior at SOLT, placed Father Corapi on administrative leave.
•Father Corapi filed a lawsuit against the former employee who had made the allegations.
•Father Corapi’s appearances were cancelled and archives of his previous speaking engagements were removed from EWTN, a Catholic network that had regularly broadcast Father Corapi.
•Father Corapi was instructed by superiors in his religious order, SOLT, to remain silent on these accusations until they had been investigated.
•On June 17, 2011, Father Corapi announced that he was withdrawing from public ministry as a priest. He then established a website called The Black Sheepdog where he dealt with current Catholic issues. Father Corapi commented on his website that he suspected certain officials of the Church wanting him gone.
Timeline — Part 2
•July 5, 2011, SOLT issued a press release, or more appropriately a bombshell. It was written by Father Sheehan.
In short, its conclusions are as follows:
•The fact-finding team of investigators garnered information from Father Corapi’s e-mails, from witnesses and from other sources and that SOLT believed the allegations to be true.
•That Father Corapi had engaged in years of sexual relations with and lived with a woman who began their relationship in the capacity of a prostitute.
•That Father Corapi repeatedly abused drugs and alcohol.
•That he engaged in sexting activity with a woman — and possibly with more than one woman.
•That Father Corapi owns over $1 million in real estate, motor boats, an ATV, a boat dock, several luxury vehicles and motorcycles.
•This is in violation of his religious profession of poverty.
•Father Corapi was instructed to move into his order’s regional office, to dismiss his lawsuit against his accuser, and not to engage in preaching, teaching, administering sacraments or public ministry.
•SOLT stated in no uncertain terms that Father Corapi is not fit for ministry and that Catholics should take note of SOLT’s conclusions.
Whether or not Father Corapi is guilty of the accusations leveled at him, I pray for his immortal soul and that of his accuser. Nothing more as been heard from any of the people involved in this matter.
Father Corapi has dropped off the radar. There is no more Black Sheepdog, I have not found any updates to SOLT’s July 5, 2011 press release. It would appear that there may be some truth to the allegations. But I still am unable to wrap my head around the whole thing.
The Bible tells us to test the spirits and hold on to what is good. Which brings another phrase to mind:
All that glitters is not gold.