Lifestyle & Belief

Legion of Christ Priest Rev. Thomas Williams admits that he fathered a child


SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - MARCH 23: South Korean Christians attend Easter worship in front of city hall on March 23, 2008 in Seoul, South Korea. Christians around the globe are staging processions, festivals and rituals to commemorate Easter. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)


Chung Sung-Jun

The most famous priest from the Legion of Christ religious order admitted that he is also a dad, the Associated Press reported. Rev. Thomas Williams has written 14 books. He has also done a number of speaking engagements and appearances as a CBS and NBC commentator. For years he had been the Legion's most public face. 

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Williams admitted to the religious transgresson after an activist contacted the Vatican with rumors about Williams' child, ABC News reported.

"A number of years ago I had a relationship with a woman and fathered her child," he said in a statement, according to ABC. "I am deeply sorry for this grave transgression and have tried to make amends."

Williams was known for his telegenic good looks, with news anchor Katie Couric describing him once as "Father What-A-Waste," according to the Independent of Ireland.  

Williams had been a vocal advocate for the Legion when it suffered from another scandal: it came to light several years ago that the Legion's late founder Rev. Marciel Maciel fathered three children with two women and sexually abused his seminarians, the AP said.

This new scandal puts the Legion under fire yet again. Reuters reported today that other leaders in the order knew that Williams had fathered a child months before the information came to light.