Father Mark Porterfield returns to active ministry
Bishop W. Shawn McKnight has provided an assignment to Father Mark Porterfield, who has recently chosen to return to priestly ministry, effective November 4, 2022. Father Porterfield’s assignment includes providing ministry to the health care facilities in the Jefferson City and Columbia area, and in the prisons in the diocese. He is also available to serve as a “supply priest” for parishes needing occasional celebrants for weekend liturgies.
As previously announced, in 2018 Bishop McKnight received a serious allegation of sexual misconduct involving an adult former employee. Subsequently, Father Porterfield was placed on temporary administrative leave, and he ultimately resigned as pastor of St. Martin Parish in St. Martins. A thorough investigation was conducted by independent professional investigators. While the accuser was believed to be credible, the allegation could not be proven.
As a result of the canonical proceeding, Bishop McKnight set forth the conditions upon which Father Porterfield could return to ministry. Father Porterfield has recently fulfilled those conditions.
As this is a personnel matter, no further details on the canonical proceeding will be released.