Breakaway group ends talks with Cleveland bishop

CLEVELAND - A breakaway congregation is ending its discussions with the Cleveland bishop about the group's withdrawal from the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland.

A spokesman for the Community of St. Peter tells The Plain Dealer that the congregation's trustees advised Bishop Richard Lennon of the decision in a letter this week. Members say the group is satisfied as it is.

A spokesman for the diocese said that he wasn't aware of the letter and that Lennon is out of town.

The bishop has said the breakaway group's leader, the Rev. Robert Marrone, was excommunicated for defying church authority. Marrone began celebrating Mass for former parishioners of St. Peter Catholic Church in a new space after the church closed in 2010 amid downsizing by the diocese. It has since reopened.

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