Bishop Emeritus Howard J. Hubbard dies

Howard Hubbard, the longest serving bishop in the history of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany who was accused of sexual abuse, died Saturday after suffering a stroke.

He was 84.

Hubbard, who retired in 2014, has adamantly denied accusations that he abused minors.

He has acknowledged covering up allegations of abuse by priests to avoid scandal.

Hubbard had said he received reports between 1977 and 2002 about 11 priests accused of sexually abusing children.

Some of the priests went for treatment, then returned to the ministry without the public’s knowledge.

When asked why he didn’t contact police, he said, “because I’m not a mandated reporter.”

Last year, Hubbard asked the Vatican to allow him to leave the priesthood and be relieved of the obligations of celibacy.

The request was denied.

In July, Hubbard announced that he had met a woman who supported him, and that they had decided to marry in a civil ceremony.

He and his wife Jennifer (Barrie) Hubbard were married just three weeks ago.

Hubbard was born in Troy, on Halloween day 1938 and was ordained a priest in 1963, at age 24.

He was installed bishop of the Albany diocese in 1977, at age 38.

His mandatory retirement came in 2014 when he was 75.

Mark Mulholland and the Associated Press contributed to this report.