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FAIRBANKS - Fairbanks Bishop Donald Kettler sent a bulk mailing to 55,000 diocesan supporters around the world, seeking money to help the missionary diocese overcome its financial woes.
Kettler said the fiscal crisis stems from legal fees from a bankruptcy reorganization; rising fuel and maintenance costs; staff travel expenses to cover the sprawling diocese; and declining investment returns.
The diocese has incurred millions of dollars in lawyer fees dealing with about 300 lawsuits alleging clerical sex abuse and in its reorganization after filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy in March 2008.
Kettler says he hopes the reorganization will eventually lead to healing by "everyone who has been hurt by this whole situation."