The archdiocese of Cologne has removed a 64-year-old priest from all posts with immediate effect because he was given a suspended sentence for abusing a child. The community in Morsbach was informed of this move over the weekend. The diocese has informed the Vatican, where it will now decide on further steps to be taken.
In the pastoral area of Morsbach/ Friesenhagen/ Wildbergerhutte, the following announcement was read out during the weekend church services:
"Rev. Msgr. Rainer Gille died on 17. In February 2011, he was relieved of his duties as pastor and chairman of the Catholic Parish Association of Morsbach/Friesenhagen/Wildbergerhutte and given leave of absence, effective immediately. He is prohibited from exercising his priestly ministry outside of a private setting until further notice.