Bishop Hubbard Asks Vatican to Remove Him from Clerical State

Howard J. Hubbard, who served as bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany for 37 years, has formally asked the Vatican to permanently remove him from being a member of the clergy.

Hubbard’s request comes as he is facing multiple lawsuits filed under New York’s Child Victims Act that accuse him of child sexual abuse — allegations that he has denied — and of systematically shielding other priests accused of sexual abuse.

“I had hoped that in my retirement I might be able to continue to serve our community as a priest,” Hubbard said in a statement released Friday. “I am not able to do so, however, because of a church policy that prohibits any priest accused of sexual abuse from functioning publicly as a priest, even if the allegations are false, as they are in my case.”

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