Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of Gabino Zavala amid news the Los Angeles bishop fathered two children more than a decade ago.
"Bishop Gabino Zavala, auxiliary bishop for the San Gabriel Pastoral Region, informed me in early December that he is the father of two minor teenage children, who live with their mother in another state," wrote LA Archbishop Jose H. Gomez.
"Bishop Zavala also told me that he submitted his resignation to the Holy Father in Rome, which was accepted. Since that time, he has not been in ministry and will be living privately," said Gomez in a statement.
Gomez described the news as sad, and added that the Archdiocese will assist with the children's college tuition.
Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar, a Catholic, told City News Service was shocked by the news. Huizar said he knew Zavala from running into him at public events and described the former bishop as "very down to earth. You almost felt like he was a neighbor."
A Mexico native, Zavala was raised in Los Angeles. He was ordained priest in 1977 and auxiliary bishop in 1994, according to his church bio.