Gabino Miranda, auxiliary bishop in Ayacucho, Peru, has been removed from his post after allegations surfaced that he sexually abused children. Little is known at this point about the nature or number of the accusations, but church officials have confirmed to the press that Miranda’s dismissal was the result of allegations of sex abuse.
Bishop Emeritus of Chimbote Luis Bambarén told RPP Noticias that the swift action by church authorities can be credited to Pope Francis strict policies on sex abuse scandals: “It’s what the pope said— zero tolerance […] Those are very serious crimes, especially when it has to do with a bishop.”
Though early reports indicated that Miranda was a member of the ultra-conservative Catholic order Opus Dei (made famous by Dan Brown’s novel “The Da Vinci Code”), the organization denies official involvement with Miranda. In a statement to Reuters, Opus Dei said that Miranda had benefited from “spiritual assistance” from a related organization, but stated definitively that “Gabino Miranda has never been incardinated in the clergy of Prelature of Opus Dei.” The statement added that Miranda “denies any crime related to minors.”
Andina news agency reports that that legal authorities in Ayacucho have opened a formal investigation into the matter. According to RPP, Miranda, 53, was known for performing mass in Quechua.