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Honduran auxiliary bishop Pineda resigns © Harald Oppitz (KNA)

Honduran auxiliary bishop Juan Jose Pineda Fasquelle, an associate of Pope's adviser Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, resigned from his post. Pineda was auxiliary bishop in Tegucigalpa since 2005.

Recently it became known that former seminarians have filed charges of sexual misconduct against the auxiliary bishop. Pope Francis accepted the 57-year-old's resignation on Friday, as the Vatican announced without further details.

Alleged homosexual relationship and embezzlement of church assets

Mainly right-wing conservative Catholic blogs attacked Pineda in the past for an alleged homosexual relationship and embezzlement of church assets. Tegucigalpa's archbishop, Cardinal Rodriguez, in connection with a related media report, spoke in an interview last December of "half-truths that end up being the worst lies".

Rodriguez was also accused of mismanagement and excessive pay, but denied the accusations. In the same interview with the U.S. "Catholic News Agency" (CNA), the cardinal said the attacks against his person are actually directed against the Pope's reform efforts. Rodriguez is part of the Cardinals' Council for Curia Reform as coordinator and is also considered a close confidant of Francis.

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