Update: Archbishop arrested on DUI suspicion apologizes

by Brian Roewe

NCR environment correspondent

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Archbishop-elect Cordileone released the following statement:

“While visiting in San Diego this past weekend, I had dinner at the home of some friends along with a priest friend visiting from outside the country and my mother, who lives near San Diego State University. While driving my mother home, I passed through a DUI checkpoint the police had set up near the SDSU campus before I reached her home, and was found to be over the California legal blood alcohol level.

“I apologize for my error in judgment and feel shame for the disgrace I have brought upon the Church and myself. I will repay my debt to society and I ask forgiveness from my family and my friends and co-workers at the Diocese of Oakland and the Archdiocese of San Francisco. I pray that God, in His inscrutable wisdom, will bring some good out of this.”

The San Diego Union-Tribune reported Monday afternoon that the newly appointed archbishop of San Francisco was arrested over the weekend in southern California on suspicion of driving while under the influence.

The Union-Tribune said San Francisco Archbishop-elect Salvatore Cordileone -- currently the bishop of Oakland -- was taken into custody Saturday at 12:26 a.m. after San Diego police stopped his vehicle near the San Diego State University campus.

From the Union-Tribune:

Cordileone, who is a San Diego native, was booked into county jail on a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence and later posted bail.

Cordileone, 56, was appointed in August 2002 an auxiliary bishop in the San Diego diocese by Pope John Paul II, and served there until his 2009 appointment as bishop of Oakland.

On July 27, he was named the successor to Archbishop George Niederauer of the San Francisco archdiocese, and is scheduled to be officially installed as archbishop Oct. 4, the feast day of the city's patron saint, Francis of Assisi.

He currently serves as the U.S. bishops' conference chairman of the Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage, and has vocally supported Proposition 8, a 2008 California ballot measure that defined marriage as between a man and a woman.

Earlier this year, Cordileone made news for his investigation into the a national gay ministries organization, calling into question their adherence to Catholic teaching, specifically concerning its expression of Catholic doctrine on homosexuality.

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