A Roman Catholic bishop in Pennsylvania says he has barred one of his predecessors from representing the diocese in public, citing his failure to protect children from abusive priests.

Scranton Bishop Joseph Bambera made the announcement Friday.

Bambera says former Bishop James Timlin is permanently barred from representing the diocese "at all public events, liturgical or otherwise." He's also referred Timlin's case to the Vatican for possible further action.

A Pennsylvania grand jury faulted Timlin for his handling of clergy sexual abuse. Timlin led the Scranton diocese for nearly two decades until 2003.

The grand jury found that statewide, some 300 priests abused more than 1,000 children since the 1940s, and church leaders covered it up.