An announcement from the Vatican on Wednesday, October 24, 2018, confirmed the removal of Bishop Martin Holley from the pastoral government of the Diocese of Memphis. Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville to act as the Apostolic Administrator for the diocese until a permanent replacement can be named.
Holley’s removal follows several months of upheaval and complaints from the faithful in the Memphis diocese based on objections to the Bishop’s management, including reassigning two-thirds of the active Priests in the diocese. Archbishops Wilton Gregory (Atlanta) and Bernard Hebda (St. Paul-Minneapolis) recently wrapped up a three-day apostolic visitation to Memphis. Conclusions from their fact-finding mission have not been released by the Holy See.
Prior to the Memphis appointment, Holley served in the Archdiocese of Washington D. C. as an Auxiliary Bishop and Vicar General under recently resigned Cardinal Wuerl and his predecessor, Theo McCarrick, who was removed from the College of Cardinal by Pope Francis. A Vatican spokesperson has denied any connection between Holley’s removal and the DC sexual abuse scandal. Holley was installed as the 5th Bishop of Memphis on October 19, 2016.
For additional media coverage, please select this link to review an article published by the National Catholic Register.
Memphis local newspaper Commercial Appeal also provided news coverage. Please click here.