Lehigh D.A. gets more information on accused priest
By Peter E. Bortner
August 27, 2018
Already charged in connection with a purported indecent assault against a teenage girl, a Roman Catholic priest who lives in Pottsville might face additional scrutiny after his diocese forwarded an additional allegation to Lehigh County prosecutors.
The Rev. Kevin M. Lonergan, 30, who has been charged with corruption of minors and indecent assault in Lehigh County, had been investigated by the Northampton County Children and Youth agency while he was while serving at St. Jane Frances de Chantal Church in Easton, the Diocese of Allentown announced this past weekend.
“Northampton County Children and Youth investigated and determined the concern to be ‘unfounded’,” according to the message from Matthew T. Kerr, the diocese’s director of communications.
Lonergan served the church in Easton from June 2014 until may 2016, and the report occurred during that period, Kerr said.
Kerr said the diocese has sent the information to District Attorney James B. Martin, who filed the charges in the existing case against Lonergan, along with other information it received since the announcement of the filing.
When it learned of the Northampton county report, the diocese barred Lonergan from ministering at the Easton parish and reported the matter to law enforcement, according to Kerr. However, he said that when the agency said the allegation was unfounded, the diocese named Lonergan assistant pastor at the Cathedral of St. Catherine of Siena, Allentown.