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Grand Rapids priest removed from priesthood amid abuse allegations

Posted at 12:33 PM, Aug 14, 2015
and last updated 2015-08-14 12:33:36-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – A retired priest with the Diocese of Grand Rapids has been permanently removed from ministry for incidents involving a minor in 1984 and 1985 at Saint James Parish.

Father Charles Antekeier, 79, retired in 2000.  He can no longer publicly present himself as a priest.

According to a statement on the Diocese of Grand Rapids website, the Diocese was approached by a victim regarding incidents in 1984-1985.  The Diocesan Review Board examined the case and made recommendations to Bishop David Walkowiak, who forwarded it to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith where the decision to remove Antekeier from the priesthood was confirmed.

“I want to express my deepest apologies to any children, young people and their families who have been abused by members of the clergy in the Diocese of Grand Rapids,” said Bishop Walkowiak in the statement. “While there are no words that can heal such wounds, I humbly ask for forgiveness for the pain and injury you and your families have suffered.”

The Diocese also says they have reported the information to civil authorities.

Anyone who has been sexually abused as a minor by a priest, deacon or church employee, or who has knowledge of any such offense against a minor, to contact the appropriate civil authority or the Diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinator at 616-243-0491.

Father Charles Antekeier Biographical Information:
Ordained: 1962
1962: St. Charles, Cheboygan
1966: St. Patrick, Grand Haven
1966: St. Mary, Grand Rapids
1972: Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Belmont
1977: St. James, Grand Rapids
1987: St. Francis Xavier, Grand Rapids
2000: Senior priest status (Retired)