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New York Superior Court rules in favor of niece of Archbishop Fulton Sheen

NEW YORK - A New York court this week rules in favor of Joan Sheen Cunningham, who is trying to bring the remains of her uncle, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, back to Peoria. 

Archbishop Sheen's mortal remains are currently placed in Saint Patrick's Cathedral in New York, where the New York Archdiocese wants him kept. However, Cunningham believes since he is from Central Illinois, he should reside here. 

An appeals court recently sent the case to the Superior Court to rule on an issue concerning differing testimony between witnesses. 

"It is truly good news that the court determined that Msgr. Franco, the witness for the Archdiocese of New York, testified completely in line with the testimony of Joan Sheen Cunningham." Patricia Gibson, Chancellor of the Catholic Diocese of Peoria, wrote in a statement. 

This is the second time a court has ruled in Cunningham's favor. This week, ultimately, the Superior Court ruled Archbishop Sheen would not have objected to his remains being moved, furthermore, the Archdiocese of New York does not have any further testimony to share against Cunningham. 

"This is truly good news because it answered the concerns of the Appellate Court. Therefore, it is everyone’s hope that Cardinal Dolan as well as the New York Archdiocese will cease their legal resistance and respect the ruling of the Superior Court. Bishop Jenky hopes that the New York Archdiocese will cooperate with Joan Sheen Cunningham and the Diocese of Peoria in the practical matters as to moving the remains of Venerable Archbishop Sheen to Peoria, Illinois." Gibson said,  "It is the hope that this process will begin immediately."


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