Editor’s note: The Rev. Michael Kelly sent this e-mail to some of his supporters on April 19, the day before the Diocese of Stockton settled a civil lawsuit alleging Kelly had molested the plaintiff, a former altar boy, for $3.75 million. The plaintiff has identified himself as Travis Trotter. We contacted Kelly by e-mail and he gave The Bee permission to print his letter.
The first thing I want to tell you all is that none of you have any idea how much your support and your prayers continue to mean to me.
It was those prayers and support that got me through the past 4½ nightmare years and, especially, the court case and its unjust verdict. I did none of those things I was accused of. Some people have e-mailed me of another allegation being brought up, I can tell you that I did none of those things, either. I will maintain my complete innocence until my last breath. God knows, and I know, that it isn’t true.
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Re. the court case: I testified for a full day and a half during the court case. I also left the details of and access to my financial resources with my attorney, so that, whatever is decided by the court, financially, I would accept the legal responsibilities imposed on me by the court — even though I did nothing wrong.
A few have asked, what about the appeal? To my knowledge, both the diocesan law firm and my attorney’s law firm fully reviewed every word of the court case and came to the conclusion that there was nothing that could be appealed.
I was told that on the Friday before I left for Ireland; it meant, in essence, that my public ministry as a priest could never be restored and, along with my health situation, greatly contributed to my decision to take care of my health with my family in Ireland.
I saw a truly excellent doctor as soon as I could after my arrival — I arrived Monday and saw the doctor on Tuesday. I have had tests for at least six different things today, the earliest it could be arranged. I also saw the doctor again today. I am hoping the doctor can help with my health problems. My family has welcomed me with open arms; they are 100 percent behind me. As I said before, the four things that keep me going are:
1) The truth
2) Your prayers and faith and belief in me
3) My family’s love and
4) My deep trust in God, and doing whatever I can for God’s glory each and every day.
I know that many of you are hurting right now. I am deeply sorry if I have, in any way, caused hurt to you by deciding to be with my family.
All I can say, in conclusion, is I am innocent, truly innocent. Thank you for everything you have meant to me, and will always and forever mean to me.
God bless each of you and your families.
Love, Fr. Mike