Following news that one of their former priests was arrested earlier this month for his alleged involvement in a cross-county meth ring, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Bridgeport, Connecticut, released a statement expressing "shock and concern" for the "gifted, accomplished and compassionate" Monsignor.
But sources tell the Connecticut Post that the Diocese had been aware of Msgr. Kevin Wallin's "personal problems" since receiving complaints nearly two years ago from rectory personnel at St. Augustine Cathedral that Wallin was "engaging in sex acts" with "odd-looking men" while "sometimes dressed as a woman."
And then there's this:
Wallin's arrest sent shock waves through the Bridgeport and Danbury communities where he was known as a charismatic speaker who was involved in many charitable activities, and who enjoyed Broadway musicals and show tunes. He often attended musicals with his mentor, former N.Y. Cardinal Edward Egan and parishioners.
Wallin, who was St. Augustine's pastor, was granted a sabbatical in July 2011 to seek a health assessment, but was suspended in May 2012 after failing to show up for follow-up examination.
Still, he continued to receive a stipend from the Diocese up until his January 3rd arrest for possession and distribution of methamphetamine.
The Diocese stuck by Wallin even after he became the owner of a North Haven sex and smoke shop called Land of Oz & Dorothy's Place shortly after leaving the priesthood.
The Statewide Narcotics Task Force, which worked with the Drug Enforcement Administration on the joint investigation that led to Wallin's arrest, believes the man nicknamed "Monsignor Meth" used his adult entertainment business to launder much of the $9,000 he was allegedly making in weekly meth sales.
The 61-year-old was ultimately busted along with co-conspirators based in Connecticut and California after reportedly selling meth to an undercover cop on multiple occasions since September of last year.
"There is an evil invading our world and it has come to our church," St. Augustine parishioner Maria Spencer-Fonseca told the CT Post. "This was a work of evil — and I am praying for the monsignor."
The Diocese has also asked for prayers for Msgr. Wallin, saying he has "difficult days ahead for him."
[screengrab via WPIX]