Father Thomas Watkins
Diocese of Raleigh (Marianist Order)
Indefinite Medical Leave: 2002
Assigned as Follows:
- 1991: Our Lady of Lourdes Church (Raleigh, NC)
- 1992-1995: St. Michael’s Church (Cary, NC)
- 1995: St. Francis de Sales Church (Lumberton, NC)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Thomas Watkins:
Father Thomas Watkins was ordained as a Marianist priest in 1963. He became a diocsean priest in 1996, and served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Raleigh. According to media reports, in 2002, he was placed on leave amidst an allegation that he made sexual advances toward an 18-year-old seminary student in approximately 1974. The alleged inappropriate sexual behavior occurred in Ohio and was reported to officials there. Watkins reportedly denied the allegation but had to undergo psychological treatment before coming to the Diocese of Raleigh in 1991.
Another allegation was made in 1995 that involved a second adult. The five-member Bishop’s Advisory Board of the diocese, which reviews allegations of sexual misconduct internally, deemed that the allegation was “credible.”
Watkins was granted indefinite medical leave of absence after refusing counseling.
The board took into account three other alleged incidents involving Watkins and adults that occurred over the last 25 years. The Diocese of Raleigh spokesman said he did not immediately know whether the diocese was aware of those allegations before it received Watkins for ministry in Raleigh.
Watkins has been relieved of all his priestly duties. His current whereabouts have not been provided by the Diocese of Raleigh.
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