“It involves the cleric withdrawing himself at once from public ministry until a more definitive determination of the allegation can be made,” he said. “It is not a judgment of guilt, and it is not equivalent to a canonical suspension or any other penal sanction. It does not affect any ecclesiastical office that he holds; thus, he remains pastor until such time as a definitive determination can be made regarding the allegation.”
During Father DeGrand’s absence, Father Sunder Ery has been named temporary parochial administrator of the four parishes. Since 2011, Father Ery has served as parochial vicar at St. Anthony of Padua and Sacred Heart parishes in Effingham and at Annunciation Parish in Shumway.
Father DeGrand, age 61, was ordained to the priesthood on May 31, 1980. In addition to his present assignment, he has served parishes in Jacksonville, Winchester, Bluffs and Granite City.
Bishop Paprocki says that anyone with knowledge of even a single instance of sexual abuse of a minor should contact local law enforcement authorities or call the diocesan victim assistance coordinator, Patricia Kornfeld, at (217) 321-1155.
For more information about the diocesan policies and safe environment programs, visit the diocesan website at www.dio.org/safeenvironment.
The Catholic Diocese of Springfield in Illinois is 130 parishes in 28 counties in central Illinois.