Announcement from Bishop James S. Wall
July 15, 2016
Fr. Andrew Riley has returned to his religious institute, the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions at my request. The Diocese of Gallup brought in Fr. Andy in May 2016 for ministry on a trial basis, as it does with many visiting priests, but in this case I requested that his time in the Diocese of Gallup come to an end, due to several matters of concern that were brought to my attention by parishioners.
These matters do not involve any allegations of abuse or illegal contact with a minor. Rather, there were two concerns: liturgical norms were not followed during the Mass, which caused many parishioners to be uncomfortable, and Fr. Riley displayed a lack of prudence in his speech and overall conduct toward parishioners. This imprudence did not appear to be caused by any malicious intent, but rather came from a lack of self-awareness regarding the kind of speech that is appropriate or inappropriate when conducting oneself as a minister of the Church. As a consequence of his conduct, I have a decided to bring an end to this period of discernment in the Diocese of Gallup.
I would like to thank the clergy and parishioners at Blanco, Bloomfield, Lumberton and Dulce for voicing their concerns and for their patience as we addressed this matter. At this time, we are working diligently to fill the priestly assignment in these parishes. Please continue to pray to the Lord that more men will respond positively to their vocation and serve as priests in the Church, especially in the Diocese of Gallup.
Thank you and God Bless.