Statement by Carl Nelson, President of Transform Minnesota
My heart was heavy when I read the news this morning of the resignation of Archbishop John Nienstedt and Auxillary Bishop Lee Piche from the Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. I know both men to be leaders who love Jesus and love His church. We found common ground on many issues.
According to public statements there has been no direct abuse or impropriety committed by either man, yet the decision by both men to resign from their leadership positions demonstrates the importance of the duty placed upon leaders in the church to protect our congregations. The Church – whether Protestant or Catholic – must vigilantly root out and defend against those who would hurt God’s children.
I have enjoyed fellowship and prayer with numerous Catholic leaders, including Archbishop Nienstedt, and found a sweet joy in our mutual devotion to Jesus, love for the Church and commitment to the Bible. I will pray for both men as they make this painful decision to lay down their leadership positions for the sake of bringing healing and restoration to the church they led. I also pray for healing for the victims who were wounded by spiritual leaders in whom they trusted.
Let these actions be a reminder to all of us called to leadership in the Church to take seriously allegations of abuse and impropriety, and to take proactive measures to ensure the safety and well-being of our congregations.