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Sunday, October 31, 2021

FSSP Reacts Immediately and Decisively to Arrest of Fr. Jackson

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Fr. James Jackson delivers a homily during the funeral Mass for Boulder police officer Eric Talley at the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception on March 29, 2021, in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Daniel Petty/Archdiocese of Denver) Fr. James Jackson delivers a homily during the funeral Mass for Boulder police officer Eric Talley at the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception on March 29, 2021, in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Daniel Petty/Archdiocese of Denver)

The Rhode Island Police announced Sunday, October 31, that they have arrested Fr. James Jackson, pastor of the FSSP's St. Mary’s Church in Providence, Rhode Island, for crimes related to possession and transfer of child pornography.

If convicted, he could face 21 years in prison. 

The FSSP was extremely quick to issue a statement on the matter, which appears below in its entirety: 

Fr. Jackson Statement

We, the FSSP, are shocked and saddened by news of Father Jackson’s arrest and the serious allegations against him.

Before starting his current assignment at the beginning of August, Father underwent a criminal background check and had a sterling record of priestly service. We had no reason to believe Father was engaging in any inappropriate behavior, let alone criminal conduct. Like all those accused of crimes, Father has a natural human right under both civil and canon law to the presumption of innocence and we will fully cooperate with the law enforcement authorities as they investigate this matter.

We are praying for all involved. Our hearts go out to all those who have been hurt by sexual misconduct of any kind.

I first met Fr. James Jackson 25 years ago. This news hits me like a punch to the chest, of course, even though it's important for all of us to presume innocence until guilt is proven. It is also very important  for the FSSP to do the right thing right away, which is precisely what they've done in this case. 

We ask our readers to pray for Father Jackson, whether he's found innocent or guilty. It is abundantly obvious that the forces of hell are keenly intent on corrupting good and holy priests at this pivotal moment  in history. We are witnessing the Devil's final battle, and it should surprise no one when he targets our priests first. 

We must pray for them all and for ourselves and for our children who are paying the terrible price of apostasy in the Church.   

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Last modified on Monday, November 1, 2021
Michael J. Matt | Editor

Michael J. Matt has been an editor of The Remnant since 1990. Since 1994, he has been the newspaper's editor. A graduate of Christendom College, Michael Matt has written hundreds of articles on the state of the Church and the modern world. He is the host of The Remnant Underground and Remnant TV's The Remnant Forum. He's been U.S. Coordinator for Notre Dame de Chrétienté in Paris--the organization responsible for the Pentecost Pilgrimage to Chartres, France--since 2000.  Mr. Matt has led the U.S. contingent on the Pilgrimage to Chartres for the last 24 years. He is a lecturer for the Roman Forum's Summer Symposium in Gardone Riviera, Italy. He is the author of Christian Fables, Legends of Christmas and Gods of Wasteland (Fifty Years of Rock ‘n’ Roll) and regularly delivers addresses and conferences to Catholic groups about the Mass, home-schooling, and the culture question. Together with his wife, Carol Lynn and their seven children, Mr. Matt currently resides in St. Paul, Minnesota.