Diocese Acknowledges Payments To Family Of Accused Deacon

CLEVELAND (AP) - Court records show the Roman Catholic Diocese
of Cleveland paid about 27-thousand dollars over nearly three years
to the wife and children of a former deacon accused of fondling
girls after he was forbidden from working for the diocese.

The records also show the former deacon, Jerry Bals, was still
living in the home in suburban Eastlake when the payments were made
from June 2000 to April 2003.

The revelations have angered the man's accusers. One says it
shows the church is taking care of the clergy but not of the

An attorney for the diocese calls the 800 dollar monthly
payments to Bals' wife -- quote -- "a stipend to a woman with
eight children who was, through no fault of her own, in dire
financial straits."