Father Paisius placed on leave of absence
The Rev. Paisius DeLucia, rector of St. Innocent’s Academy in Kodiak, has been placed on leave of absence as he faces allegations of physical and verbal abuse.
The Bulgarian Eastern Orthodox Diocese said through its website that the move was in response to the allegations and complaints against DeLucia “filed at the Diocesan Chancery by a number of individuals.”
At least 15 former academy students have posted their allegations through the website academyabuse.info, saying they’ve either experienced or witnessed physical abuse at the academy.
Sgt. Eric Olsen, Alaska State Troopers’ Kodiak post supervisor, previously said that troopers are investigating. Another trooper, who requested anonymity, confirmed Wednesday that the case is still open and more statements are being taken. De Lucia has not been charged with any crime.
Bishop Daniil of Dragovitsa, a high-ranking metropolitan vicar of the church, visited St. Innocent’s Academy in Kodiak last week and interviewed witnesses.
But the website maintained by former students accuse the bishop of “revictimizing” two former students who met him for interviews. It said the bishop “urged them to visit the academy and see how it has changed. He also urged them to meet with Father Paisius.”
The New York-based diocese governs about 360 churches in Alaska, Canada and Australia, according to a church spokesman