Priest locked out of church

August 20, 2009 2:59:12 AM PDT
The Raleigh Diocese is showing its support for a Robeson County priest after parishioners locked him out of Sunday's service.On Sunday, parishioners pad-locked the doors to keep Father Walter Ospina out of the Spanish speaking church at Saint Andrews.

Members said they don't like Father Ospina, because he does not embrace his parishioners -- a majority of them are Mexican.

There is also an allegation of inappropriate behavior.

But some church members who are loyal to Father Ospina said other members are trying to stir up trouble.

"For me, Father Ospina is good," church member Alfonsio Arroyo said. "Yesterday he called me and told me we have the mass today."

Currently, Father Walter Ospina is holding mass at a small Catholic church in Red Springs.

A Diocese spokesman said there was no reason to remove Father Ospina, but it is bringing in a facilitator to help solve the problem.

Officials also said no masses will be held at Saint Andrews until the matter is resolved.


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