- Associated Press - Thursday, August 27, 2015

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - A central Illinois Catholic priest has been forced to step down from public ministry for past allegations of sexual abuse of a minor.

The Catholic Diocese of Peoria announced Wednesday that the allegations against the Rev. Terry Cassidy date back nearly three decades. The release didn’t offer details.

Cassidy is the pastor of St. Ann Catholic Church in Peoria.

Officials say the decision was made after Bishop Daniel Jenky received unanimous advice of the Diocesan Review Commission.

The 63-year-old Cassidy won’t be allowed to publicly function as a priest. He can’t wear clerical clothes or use the titles Father or Reverend.

Chancellor Patricia Gibson offered no further comment on the case. A message left Thursday on Cassidy’s office phone wasn’t immediately returned.

Cassidy served 16 churches from 1984 to 2001.

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