Monday, February 3, 2003

Parish sympathetic to priest who had affair



The Associated Press

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Parishioners continue to support a priest who left the church in April after having a sexual affair with a woman and fathering a child.

Last week, records that had previously been sealed showed that the Rev. Greg Schuler fathered a child in 1977 while he was training as a priest. Records with the Catholic Diocese of Lexington also show that Schuler had a sexual affair with a married woman when he served at the Cathedral of Christ the King, Lexington's largest cathedral.

When Schuler retired in April, he publicly said he needed a break because of job burnout.

With the recent news, parishioners continue to support Schuler.

"I think it's sad that we have to be reminded about it again," Mary Kozak said after a late-afternoon Mass. "He's in our prayers. We always talk about how he brought the scriptures into our everyday lives."

Another member, Brenda Waller, said: "It doesn't take one thing away from what he did for us. He's a wonderful man. He's a human being, like all of us."

The Rev. Paul Prabell, Schuler's successor as the cathedral's rector, said that in addition to Saturday being a day of mourning for the Columbia shuttle astronauts, it was also a "day of mourning for the congregation."

Schuler, who resigned in April, is on a year's leave of absence as a priest. He now lives in northern Kentucky.




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