The Problem of Sex Abuse in the Philadelphia Archdiocese – Priests With Credible Allegations of Child Sex Abuse


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In any civil lawsuit dealing with sex abuse within an institution like a school, church, diocese, etc., who knew what and when they knew it are critical components of any sex abuse victim’s case. In the case of priest abuse of children within the Philadelphia Archdiocese, the Archdiocese’ own press releases demonstrate that an alarming number of priests were disciplined due to a credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor.

Since 2004, over 40 priests were either laicized (defrocked) or restricted and faculties withdrawn due to credible allegations of child sex abuse.

Below are two lists of priests. The list on the left shows the names of the Philadelphia area priests who were defrocked. The list on the right shows the names of Philadelphia area priests who were restricted. Both lists are arranged by year and show the month and year action was taken against the priests. These lists are available at the Archdiocese website: priests laicized due to a credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor and priests restricted due to a credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor.

  • Gerald J. Royer, February 1965
  • Richard D. Dolan, May 2000
  • Sylwester Wiejata, April 2002
  • Martin J. Satchell, September 2004
  • Edward M. DePaoli, August 2004
  • James J. Brzyski, March 2005
  • Nicholas V. Cudemo, March 2005
  • Thomas J. Durkin, March 2005
  • Raymond O. Leneweaver, March 2005
  • Richard G. Jones, May 2005
  • Francis X. Trauger, May 2005
  • Thomas M. Kohler, June 2005
  • John J. Delli Carpini, July 2005
  • Michael J. McCarthy, January 2006
  • Stanley M. Gana, March 2006
  • Edward V. Avery, March 2006
  • James E. McGuire, March 2006
  • William J. Dougherty, July 2006
  • Francis J. Gallagher, November 2006
  • Michael F. Conroy, January 2007
  • James M. Iannarella, February 2007
  • Thomas J. Smith, March 2007
  • Michael J. Donofrio, July 2007
  • David C. Sicoli, February 2008
  • John Mulholland, August 2008
  • Rev. John A. Cannon, September 2004
  • Rev. Pasquale R. Catullo, September 2004
  • Rev. James J. Coonan, September 2004
  • Rev. Joseph P. Gallagher, September 2004
  • Rev. Msgr. Francis A. Giliberti, September 2004
  • Rev. Thomas J. Grumm, September 2004
  • Rev. Matthew J. Kornacki, September 2004
  • Rev. Richard J. McLoughlin, September 2004
  • Rev. Thomas F. Shea, September 2004
  • Rev. Carmen F. Taraborelli, September 2004
  • Rev. Thomas J. Wisniewski, September 2004
  • Rev. James T. Henry, November 2004
  • Rev. John P. Schmeer, November 2004
  • Rev. Msgr. Philip J. Dowling, March 2005
  • Rev. Msgr. Charles J. Schaeflein, November 2005
  • Rev. John F. Hummell, June 2006
  • Rev. Gerard J. Hoffman, July 2008
  • Rev. Msgr. George J. Mazzotta, May 2012
  • Msgr. Hugh P. Campbell, February 2013

Notice the flurry of activity beginning in 2004. Between 2004 and 2005, 25 priests were found to have a credible allegation of sexual abuse of a minor. In 2006, 2007 and 2008, another 14 priests were laicized or restricted from ministry. These numbers demonstrate that credible allegations of child sex abuse by priests were reaching epidemic proportions by at least 2006. There is a strong argument that at least by 2005, the Archdiocese should have evaluated reporting methods and internal policies and procedures related to priests who were suspected of sex abuse.

In addition, it is important to note that these cases are based on only those allegations that the Archdiocese found credible. There may be many more cases and many more priests who should be added to these lists.

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About the Philadelphia Priest & Child Sex Abuse Law Firm of LBK

Co-founded by Guy D’Andrea who is a former sex crimes unit prosecutor, our firm is dedicated to pursuing justice for those who were injured due to the actions of another. This includes sexual abuse and criminal activity. Read more about Guy D’Andrea here.