Catholic bishop's 2009 resignation in Norway linked to child abuse
Apr 7, 2010, 8:17 GMT
Oslo - New light was shed Wednesday on the sudden 2009 resignation of a former Catholic bishop in Norway after it emerged the bishop had admitted to abusing a choirboy, the Adresseavisen newspaper reported.
German-born Georg Mueller left his post as bishop of the diocese of Trondheim in June 2009. He made his surprise announcement in a sermon, but at the time his resignation was attributed to difficulties in cooperating with the congregation.
The newspaper reported that the Vatican launched a probe in early 2009. When confronted with the allegations, Mueller admitted to the abuse and left Norway.
'The case was not made public since the victim did not want publicity,' Trondheim and Oslo Bishop Bernt Eidsvig said, adding that the Norwegian statue of limitations had prevented any legal action.
In a statement published Wednesday, Eidsvig expressed 'shame on behalf of the church' and noted that Mueller did not have any assignments in the Catholic church.
The abuse took place some 20 years ago when Mueller was a priest in Trondheim. The victim, now in his 30s, received some 400,000 kroner (67,000 dollars) in compensation, according to the newspaper.
During questioning, Mueller repeatedly said the choirboy was the only minor he had abused.
About 80 per cent of Norway's 4.8 million people belong to the Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church, while the Catholic church has some 46,000 members.