Skip to comments.Second driver may be charged in case of TV priest injured in Florida
Posted on 01/13/2004 12:21:01 PM PST by nickcarraway
The rumors and initial reports flew with fury Monday as word spread that a nationally-known priest, Father Benedict Groeschel, author of numerous books and director of spiritual development for the Diocese of New York, had been hit by a car after arriving at Orlando International Airport in Florida Sunday.
Police tell Spirit Daily the incident occurred at 9:43 p.m. as Father Groeschel was leaving a Chili's Restaurant with a carry-out bag. The accident was at the corner of Semoran Boulevard and Hazeltine National Drive about a mile north of the airport.
The priest was "barely conscious" when police arrived, according to Detective Norris Butler, who said there is an investigation involving a second car that may have caused the accident. He said the car that actually hit Groeschel did not appear at fault. "I can't give out more details because it is an ongoing investigation," he said, leaving open the possibility that charges may be brought against the second driver.
Groeschel was reported in stable but critical condition, according to Joe Brown, a spokesman for an Orlando trauma center who could not divulge further details. Initial, unverified reports cited a broken leg and arm or hand, as well as a mild heart attack, but these reports remain unconfirmed. It is known only that bones in some area of his body were broken. According to a report in the Orlando Sentinel, there was also head trauma. He was listed in stable but critical condition.
Groeschel, 70, who was also known for appearances on the Catholic television network EWTN, was in Central Florida to speak at the San Pedro Retreat Center in Seminole County as a guest lecturer for the International Institute for Clergy Formation.
A psychologist, Father Groeschel has written popular books such as A Still, Small Voice and The Cross at Ground Zero. He travels on nearly a weekly basis, popular at conferences as well as retreats like the one in Florida. He has appeared for twenty years on EWTN, which is currently airing a series of his on suffering. In spring the network will present a new series of his on the shrines of Europe. Father Groeschel is a founder of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal in New York City, which split off from the Capuchins in the 1980s to pursue radical poverty and propagate the pro-life message.
Along with his other duties, Father Groeschel has extensively counseled abuse priests and believes the media has exaggerated the crisis. The public is asked to pray for the priest but refrain from calling the hospital in deference to privacy and hospital concerns.
More prayers for Fr. G!!
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