Atlanta Archbishop Apologizes For Lavish
Living, May Sell Mansion
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[April 01, 2014]
(Reuters) — The Roman Catholic
Archbishop of Atlanta, Ga., has apologized for building a $2.2 million mansion
to use as his home, a move that made him the object of derision and
complaint, and said he may sell it.
Archbishop Wilton Gregory said he took his "eye off the ball"
after the archdiocese received a $15 million donation from the
estate of Joseph Mitchell, a nephew of the "Gone With The Wind" author,
Pope Francis has been urging Roman Catholic officials to live
simpler lives and has renounced the papal apartments in the Vatican
palace for modest quarters in a church guest house.
The Vatican removed a German bishop — dubbed the "bishop of bling" — last month from his job because he spent 31 million euros ($43
million) on a residence where fittings included a bath that cost
15,000 euros and 2.9-million-euro private chapel.
In Monday's edition of The Georgia Bulletin, the newspaper for the
Atlanta archdiocese, Gregory wrote: "While my advisors and I were
able to justify this project fiscally, logistically and practically,
I personally failed to project the cost in terms of my own integrity
and pastoral credibility with the people of God of north and central
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He also said in the newspaper column that the archdiocese would
begin the process of selling the mansion "if it is the will" of
Church and other advisers.
A Vatican spokesman said he had no comment.
(Reporting by Carey Gillam; editing by Louise Ireland)
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