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Candlelight vigil, prayer service set for former island pastor

By Staff | Oct 30, 2018

The Parishioners for Justice for Father Christopher Senk will hold a candlelight vigil and prayer service on Nov. 4 from 5 to 6 p.m. on Sanibel to mark the second anniversary of the pastor’s dismissal.

It will be held at the former Doc Ford’s Restaurant at Sanibel-Captiva Road and Rabbit Road, with parking available. Open to the public, the event will include prayers, music and tributes to Senk.

“This is a painful anniversary for the parishioners of St. Isabel’s Church and to our beloved pastor, Father Christopher Senk,” Leslie Anding, spokesperson for Parishioners for Justice, said.

She noted that it has been two years since Senk was placed on administrative leave by the Bishop of Venice Frank Dewane. Dewane also removed Senk from his home and forbade him to practice his ministry by saying Mass or administering the sacraments publicly.

Senk was alleged to have solicited money from an elderly parishioner.

The Parishioners for Justice reported that Senk was since been cleared of the charges by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, but that Dewane has refused to return Senk to active ministry.

“Father Senk’s civil rights were clearly violated with no due process, no presentation of the charges against him and no recourse in the face of a vindictive and unjust bishop,” Anding said.

The group is committed to exonerating Senk and protesting actions by Dewane.

For more information, visit www.parishionersforjustice.com.