Troy priest center of embezzlement investigation

Archdiocese of Detroit says Rev. Edward Belczak of St. Thomas More Parish is temporarily excluded from his post

Published On: Jan 30 2013 04:37:23 PM EST   Updated On: Jan 23 2013 09:00:15 PM EST
TROY, Mich. -

The priest of a church in Troy has temporarily stepped aside in the wake of an embezzlement investigation.

The Archdiocese of Detroit said the Rev. Edward Belczak of the St. Thomas More Parish was temporarily excluded from his post on Tuesday.

Belczak was trusted and liked by parishioners, and now he is accused of stealing money from those that trusted him.

The church is one of the biggest Catholic parishes in Oakland County.

Some of the parishioner can't believe the accusations against Belczak.

"A terrible shock and I totally do not believe it," said Marie Liposky a parishioner at St. Thomas More. "The church is filled because of him."

Both the Archdiocese and the Troy Police Department are conducting separate investigations into a slew of alleged misappropriation and mismanagement by Belczak.

"I wouldn't consider him as running a business and that's I think, what running a parish is, it's running a business. I don't think in anyway he is a business man, he's a humanitarian," said parishioner Don Liposky.

The charges against Belczak include:

Monsignor John Zenz, episcopal vicar of the Northwest Region and pastor of Holy Name Parish, Birmingham, has been named administrator of St. Thomas More Parish. 

About the Rev. Edward Belczak

Education: Sacred Heart Seminary, Detroit, and St. John's Provincial Seminary, Plymouth

Ordained: Sept. 3, 1972

1972-1975: Associate Pastor, National Shrine of the Little Flower Parish, Royal Oak

1975-1980: Co-pastor, National Shrine of the Little Flower Parish, Royal Oak

1980-1984: Associate Pastor, Our Lady of Sorrows Parish, Farmington

1984-2013: Pastor of St. Thomas More Parish, Troy

2013: Temporarily excluded from the office of pastor, St. Thomas More Parish

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