The Diocese of Allentown paid a financial settlement to extract itself from a civil lawsuit involving allegations against Monsignor Francis Nave.
The settlement did not affect the ongoing criminal investigation against Nave, nor did it involve the lawsuit filed against Nave himself.
A Florida lawyer, acting on behalf of a victim in Virginia who made allegations against Nave, sued Nave, the Diocese and Bishop Alfred Schlert. The settlement paid by the Diocese involved only the part of the suit against the Diocese and the Bishop.
While it is frustrating to pay to settle a lawsuit rather than defending it, in this case it was much less expensive to settle than to litigate. This is a very common approach to ending lawsuits that have no merit.
Monsignor Nave is not represented by lawyers hired by the Diocese. He has retained his own legal counsel at his own expense.
Making this settlement does not mean the Diocese has taken a position on Monsignor Nave’s guilt or innocence. Only the legal system can determine that. The criminal investigation continues.
The victim in the case asked that the amount of the settlement not be disclosed. There was no confidentiality agreement in the settlement.
Bishop Schlert has appointed a new Administrator for our parish. Effective Thursday, August 16, Father Christopher Butera will be Administrator Pro Tem of Sacred Heart Parish. Father Butera comes to us from service as Chaplain, Lehigh University Campus Ministry and resident of St. Anne’s in Bethlehem. While serving at Sacred Heart he will also be Director, Diocesan Office of Seminarian Formation.