Thursday, January 06, 2005
Gilbert priest is fired from job as pastor: "GILBERT - The Rev. John Cunningham has been fired as pastor at St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church in Gilbert, eight months after he was suspended and a month after criminal allegations were made against him. Cunningham's attorney, his brother James, said Wednesday that the priest received a letter from Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted on Tuesday removing him as pastor. The priest earlier had declined to resign, as requested by the bishop. Phoenix Diocese spokeswoman Mary Jo West would not comment on the matter Wednesday. She said parishioners will be the first to hear the official word. A letter from Olmsted will be read at all Masses this weekend at the church, which meets in a school at Williams Gateway Airport. "