BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Edward Scharfenberger came to Buffalo with the simple message “I have no white papers, no hidden agenda.”
Scharfenberger, who continues to serve as Bishop of the Diocese of Albany, has taken over as Apostolic Administrator of the Buffalo Diocese.
This comes following the resignation of Richard Malone following controversy over the handling of multiple sex abuse allegations related to the Diocese.
MORE | Bishop Malone steps down
“I feel like the neighbor down the block,” Scharfenberger said during a conference introducing him on Wednesday morning.
Scharfenberger noted that he is aware of the struggle people in western New York have dealt with amid the sex abuse scandal.
“I realize this family has been suffering for a number of years,” he said.
Moving forward, Scharfenberger promised that victims of sexual abuse would be treated with respect.
During the conference, Scharfenberger addressed the possibility of the Buffalo Diocese going bankrupt, saying he will examine options.
It’s not clear if Malone, who is now being referred to as Bishop Emeritus, will have any role in the Diocese, Scharfenberger says. It is something the new leader says he will have to decide, calling Malone’s choice to leave “a prudent decision.”
Although Malone is gone, Buffalo’s new spiritual leader noted that Auxillary Bishop Edward Grosz wishes to continue serving the Diocese of Buffalo.