WORCESTER – Bishop McManus announced Thursday that he has granted faculties for limited pastoral ministry to Father Stephen M. Gemme, effective immediately. He will celebrate Mass and other sacraments at Crozier House and at other non-parish institutional settings. Crozier House is a residential facility operated by Catholic Charities in Worcester for men recovering from addictions.
Bishop McManus removed Father Gemme from ministry in July 2013 after he admitted to a gambling addiction.
He pleaded guilty last year to stealing nearly $240,000 from St. Bernadette Parish and School in Northborough. The parish and school were made whole in their loss through diocesan insurance. Father Gemme entered into a restitution agreement with the Diocese and its insurers and has participated in a mental health evaluation and continuing treatment for his gambling addiction.
His return to limited ministry is in accordance with the terms of his probation and his treatment program.
He will not function in any fiduciary capacity, according to a statement released by the Diocesan Office of Communications.