Bridgeport Roman Catholic Bishop Frank Caggiano has apologized to members of a Stratford parish for not talking to them earlier about past allegations of abuse and sexual harassment against their new pastor.
The Connecticut Post reports that Caggiano met privately Thursday with parishioners at Our Lady of Grace and told them Monsignor Martin Ryan had been thoroughly vetted by church officials.
Diocesan officials removed Ryan as pastor of St. Edward the Confessor Church in New Fairfield in 2011 after they say he acknowledged sending inappropriate emails to a female parish employee.
In 2003, the diocese settled a lawsuit accusing Ryan of molesting a teenage girl in the early 1970s at St. Theresa's Church in Trumbull. Ryan denied the allegations.
Ryan did not immediately return a message seeking comment Friday.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.