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News Press Release

Bishop Fisher Accepts Independent Review Board Recommendation to Restore Priestly Faculties to the Reverend Raymond A. Donohue


(Buffalo, NY) – Bishop Michael W. Fisher has accepted the recommendation of the Independent Review Board – responsible for investigating allegations of sexual improprieties by priests of the Diocese – that the Reverend Raymond A. Donohue’s priestly faculties be restored. Fr. Donohue was placed on administrative leave by Bishop Fisher in September of last year upon an allegation being brought forth by an individual and related to an incident alleged to have occurred in 1987. The Independent Review Board determined that the allegation was not substantiated. Fr. Donohue is retired and not assigned to any parish, nor does he have responsibility for any ministerial office.

The Diocese followed its rigorous policies and protocols in dealing with the allegation in question, including notifying the office of the Erie County District Attorney, which declined to act on the allegation. In addition, an independent investigator was retained to investigate the allegations. The attorneys for the claimant declined the investigator’s requests to interview the claimant. The investigator did interview other witnesses, including Fr. Donohue, who denied ever committing any acts of abuse.

The Diocese of Buffalo encourages any person who wishes to report an instance of sexual abuse or sexual harassment by a member of the clergy, diocesan employee, or volunteer to contact the Victims Assistance Coordinator at 716-895-3010 or Jacqueline.joy@ccwny.org. For a more extensive overview of resources, go to: https:https://www.buffalodiocese.org/abuse-response