PEWAUKEE — In a letter dated May 18, Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki informed parishioners at Queen of Apostles Parish that their administrator failed to exercise good judgment in a relationship he had with an adult woman.
Archbishop Listecki wrote that Fr. Sean O’Connell, former associate pastor of St. Dominic Parish, Brookfield, who has served as administrator at Queen of Apostles since June 19, 2012, “has been a good pastoral leader,” since he was appointed there last June.
“Fr. Sean is rightfully embarrassed, ashamed and remorseful about his behavior and he should be,” he wrote. “Although we know the church is made up of imperfect human beings, it is not something we expect from our parish priest, and so it still comes as a shock to our system.”
The archbishop asked parishioners to pray for Fr. O’Connell, who resigned as adminstrator to make addressing his behavior a priority, and said that he will receive assistance to do so.
“I ask that you pray for him during this difficult time in his priestly life. Fr. Sean asked me to let you know that he loves this parish community very much and continues to pray for you,” Archbishop Listecki wrote.
Deacon Greg Price will serve as temporary parish director until a new parish administrator is appointed; the archdiocese will work with the Queen of Apostles staff, trustees and parish council to ensure the sacramental, pastoral and administrative needs are met, according to the letter.
Archbishop Listecki asked that people “respect the privacy of those involved and refrain from harmful gossip.”
He also reminded them that faith is rooted in the perfection of Jesus Christ, not the imperfection of its ministers.
“Jesus promised he would send the Holy Spirit at Pentecost to be with us as Advocate. May that same Holy Spirit guide us through this difficult time,” Archbishop Listecki wrote. “And May God, through the intercession of Mary, Queen of Apostles, continue to bless each of you and your families.”