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Sunday headlines

Mar 20, 2011 9:38 am
Retired priest removed, 3 on leave
Cathy Woodruff of the Times Union reports that Bishop Howard Hubbard of the Albany Roman Catholic Diocese has placed three retired priests on administrative leave and removed another from the ministry based on allegations that they sexually abused minors. The Rev. Robert Purcell, 76, retired pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Margaretville, Delaware County, was removed from the ministry as the result of a recent abuse claim dating to 1957, 17 years before his ordination. Three other retired priests were place on leave as a result of allegations that they sexually abused a minor in Albany between 1986 and 1991. Two had remained in active ministry. They are: the Rev. Alan Jupin, 73, retired pastor of Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Schenectady, and the Rev. Donald Ophals, 77, who served as pastor at St. Francis de Sales Parish in Troy at one time. The third priest placed on leave, Louis Douglas, 82, retired from St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Albany in 1992 and is under medical care in a nursing facility. The Rev. John Bertolucci -- a fourth priest accused with Jupin, Ophals and Douglas -- was removed from ministry by Hubbard in 2002 based on unrelated sexual abuse allegations.

Young Republicans' Lincoln Dinner features Gibson
Jamie Larson of the Register-Star reports on the 50th annual Abraham Lincoln Anniversary Dinner, hosted by the Columbia County Young Republicans at Kozel’s restaurant in Ghent on Saturday night, March 19, After 50 years, the first such event to feature a sitting Congressman: Chris Gibson, R-20th District. Gibson was reported saying that the congressional budget impasse for the year is near a resolution in an accompanying story.

38th annual St. Patrick's Day parade celebrates the Emerald Isle

The Daily Mail has pieces, and photos, from Saturday parades in Greenville and Tannersville held in celebration of St. Patrick's Day... and probably the advent of sunny skies and warm weather, as well.

Assemblywoman calls on state to distribute iodine pills within 30 miles of Indian Point
Mid Hudson News Network reports that State Assemblywoman Naomi Rivera (D-Bronx) has asked that radiation-blocking iodine pills be made available to all New Yorkers within 30 miles of the Indian Point nuclear power plants immediately. The lawmaker, who is a member of the Assembly Health Committee, called for the pills one week after the devastating earthquake, tsunami and later nuclear power plant radiation in Japan.

Local Politics Notes
Dick May runs over the recent, sparsely-attended Greene County village races, as well as the legislature's appointment of Republican Patricia Handel to fill the seat vacated by Democrat Sean Frey in Durham. He particularly stresses what he terms "a quaint feature of election law in this State:" the requirement that in order to appear on the ballot, every candidate must "pretend to be the nominee of a political party."

Residents protest treatment of alleged document leaker
Jamie Larson of the Register-Star also has a story up about a Saturday, March 19 protest in the center of Chatham against the detention and treatment of American serviceman Pvt. Bradley Manning for his role in the Wikileaks release of government materials. The most controversial file leaked by Manning was a gun sight video from an Apache helicopter that shows solders firing not at armed insurgents, but rather at civilians and two Reuters newsmen who were killed along with the others in the attack. From images of the event it seems a little over a dozen were in attendance.
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