Justice? Falsely Accused Priest Finally Returned To Ministry – After Eight Years!

Rev. William C. Graham : Diocese of Duluth

Back where he belongs: Rev. William C. Graham of the Diocese of Duluth

Eight years. If you can believe it, that is how long it took for a falsely accused priest to finally return to ministry.

After a scammer accused Rev. William C. Graham, a priest of the Diocese of Duluth in Minnesota, in 2016 of abusing him nearly four decades earlier in the 1970s, Graham took the unusual step of actually suing his accuser. And he not only won his case in 2018, but a jury also ordered the accuser to pay $13,500 to Graham to cover his lost earnings as a result of being placed on leave because of the allegation. Good for Fr. Graham!

A juror in the case even added afterwards that there was "no proof" that any abuse ever occurred.

So … Why on earth did it take an additional six years for the laconic Diocese of Duluth to finally reinstate him to active ministry this past month? There does not seem to be a clear answer, but someone at the diocese owes a clear answer to the Catholics who support it.

As a result of the diocese's inexcusable delay, Fr. Graham was forced to live as a priest out of active ministry with the cloud hanging over his head as an accused pedophile. His suffering was likely great.

The Catholic Church has a reputation for thinking in terms of centuries and working at a glacial pace. While that is not necessarily a bad thing in terms of Church practices and dogma, when it comes to adjudicating the cases of priests, it is unacceptable.

Kudos to Fr. Graham for seeking justice. If only his bishop were more concerned about his duty to Fr. Graham to resolve the issue promptly.

[HT: The great Matt C. Abbott at Renew America. Abbott has also posted the text of Fr. Graham's first homily upon his return to his parish of St. Michael's Catholic Church in Duluth.]


Our previous posts about Rev. Graham's case:
- "Two Falsely Accused Priests Fight Back and Win!" (Sept. 2019)
- "Falsely Accused Priest Fights Back – And Wins! Jury Orders False Accuser to Pay Damages" (Sept. 2018)

Want to learn about the rampancy of false accusations against priests?:
- "The Great Shakedown Keeps A-Rollin': Phony Claims Continue at Epic Pace, Here Are The Facts" (January 2024)
- The Greatest Fraud Never Told: False Accusations, Phony Grand Jury Reports, and the Assault on the Catholic Church (Amazon.com)


  1. Susanna says:

    Thank you Jesus, thank you Mary. Everyday I offer prayers for priests in need. God keep you Father.