Pope Francis has forced a Minnesota bishop to resign following an investigation into the claim that he allowed a priest to keep practicing despite allegedly abusing a 16-year-old boy in the early 1970s. The Vatican announced Tuesday that Francis has accepted the resignation of Crookston Bishop Michael Hoeppner who, at 71, is just four years away from the traditional retirement age for bishops. According to the Associated Press, Hoeppner is accused of declaring a priest fit for ministry despite Hoeppner being aware of sex-abuse allegations against the priest. The victim, Ron Vasek, previously alleged that Hoeppner blackmailed him into retracting his allegations against Monsignor Roger Grundhaus, who continues to deny the claims against him. Hoeppner has claimed he trying to protect the victim’s identity by declaring Grundhaus fit for ministry.
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