John Nienstedt, the Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis, has refused to resign despite allegations of sexual misconduct and a cover-up of child sex abuse, reports ABC News.
Last week, Minnesota newspaper the Star Tribune called on Nienstedt - who in the past told the mother of a gay son that she must reject him or risk burning in hell and said Satan is behind gay marriage - to resign.
An allegation that he touched a boy inappropriately in a public setting resulted in no criminal charges. Another involves accusations of inappropriate sexual behavior with seminarians and priests.
Nienstedt, who claims both allegations are untrue, said that although he was shown memos about problem priests, he didn't fully grasp the scope of the troubles until last year, after Jennifer Haselberger, Nienstedt’s top adviser on church law, resigned last year and publicly accused church leaders of mishandling several cases.
Writing in a column published last week in The Catholic Spirit, Nienstedt publicly addressed the numerous recent calls for him to resign:
"In a sense, you could say that I didn't see the forest through the trees. But when everything started coming out in October, whoa, Nelly, I just wasn't aware that there was the kind of breadth to the whole thing — which surprised me and kind of sickened me.
"I am bound to continue in my office as long as the Holy Father has appointed me here. I have acknowledged my responsibility in the current crisis we face, and I also take responsibility for leading our archdiocese to a new and better day.”
In a statement, The Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests said that it is "saddened" that Nienstedt won't resign "but distraught that he continues to deceive."
Watch a report on allegations made against Nienstedt last year, AFTER THE JUMP...