COLTS NECK, N.J. - The pastor and two youth ministers at a central New Jersey church have left their posts amid criticism that a priest once accused of child molestation was allowed to work with young parish members.
The Star-Ledger of Newark reported that the Rev. Thomas Triggs announced his resignation from the pulpit during a service Saturday night at St. Mary's Parish in Colts Neck. The newspaper also said youth ministers Michael and Amy Lenehan no longer held those positions, though it was not clear whether they resigned or were forced out.
The shake-up comes just days after the resignation of the Rev. Michael Fugee in the Archdiocese of Newark. Parishioners say Fugee, who is longtime friends with the Lenehans, had been involved with the parish youth group in defiance of an agreement with Bergen County prosecutors that he not work with children.
Fugee was convicted in 2003 of criminal sexual contact involving a boy. His conviction was overturned by an appeals court, and he eventually entered a pretrial intervention program.