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  25 Local Priests of the 63 Are Accused of Indecent Actions

By Bernard J. Scally
Local Catholic
September 29, 2005

Released a week ago, the Philadelphia Grand Jury's report leaves almost no parish untouched by the 63 accused priests listed. Each generation of parishioners have probably come into contact with the accused; not only in their own parishes but in their high schools as well.

Some of those parishes include: St. John the Baptist, St. Josephat's, Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM), Roman Catholic High School, Kennedy-Kenrick and their predecessors Archbishop Kennedy and Bishop Kenrick, and Archbishop Carroll and it's formerly separated Boys and Girls Schools.

Some residents, while in shock, believe that the report is "Catholic bashing" overblown by the media. Others confront the report with a sense of realism.

"I am appalled and sickened, if it is true, about Cardinals Krol and Bevilacqua covering up the scandal," said one resident. The report, which has taken 3 years to complete, follows some priests careers back to the 1950s. Many of the accused in the community were long time residents of their parish, especially St. John the Baptist where two of the accused lived for almost 20 years.

Many in the community are not surprised at finding the name of Rev. James Dux on the list of the accused.

According to the report, in 1975, he was sent to St. John's after being accused in a case involving 3 minors in Ambler. He directed to seek a catholic psychiatrist. Ten years later, in 1985, while at St. John's, he was found with "inappropriate material" which was destroyed. In 1994, he was encouraged to retire after being accused by a number of unknown altar servers. Dux is currently retired at the Villa St. Joseph in Darby.

Not all priests were accused of only child abuse; other allegations include possession of child pornography. Rev. Matthew Kornacki, who served as Parochial Vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church (IHM) from June 1992 until June 1997, is according to the report serving a 30-month sentence at a federal penitentiary plus a $6,000 fine for that offence. Many in the IHM parish were shocked to learn about "Father Matt". Many remember Kornacki as a "holy man". One parishioner was greatly aided and consoled by Kornacki through a time of great personal crisis.

"It was like 'wow'," she said, "I was in denial, it was very difficult to comprehend. While we do strive to be Christ-like, we are only human, but you do have to be realistic. Now I wonder if he did anything to my [children]"

On the question of justice, she said,"I think they should be punished for what they did. This is the job they choose to do. I don't believe they should be treated any differently than anybody else."

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia in a statement responding to the Grand Jury's report said,"The Church has always viewed sexual abuse of a young person as a grave moral evil. In order to evaluate these situations we relied upon the medical expertise of the time. Today, science better understands abusive behavior. We continue to practice zero tolerance: no priest who has sexually abused a minor will serve in any ministry"

Many of the accused on the list are retired, deceased or defrocked. While very few still retain clerical positions and are restricted from interacting with children and may perform only private mass.

The Archdiocese also has established a Victims Assistance Coordinators Program. It can be reached at 215-587-3880.

Out of the seven catholic parishes in the area, five of them housed up to three accused.25 out of 63 priests in all.

The list of parishes and high schools include (but not limited to):

IMMACUALTE HEART OF MARY CHURCH

Rev. James T. Henry (Assistant Pastor) June 1964-June 1969
Rev. Thomas J. Smith (Assistant Pastor) June 1973-Jan. 1978
Rev. Matthew Kornacki (Parochial Vicar) June 1992-June 1997

ST. BRIDGET'S CHURCH

Rev. Leonard W. Brougham (Assistant Pastor) Jan. 1961-June 1962
Rev. Joseph P. Gausch (Assistant Pastor) Aug. 1964-June 1973
Rev. John J. Murray (Assistant Pastor) June 1963-June 1965

ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH

Rev. Edward M. DePaoli (Parochial Vicar) July 1991-Dec. 1992
Rev. James M. Dux (Parochial Vicar) Feb. 1972-Feb. 1994
Rev. Thomas J. Grumm (Resident) June 1988-April 2002

ST. JOSEPHAT CHURCH

Rev. Leonard A. Furmanski (Pastor) Dec. 1994-June 1998

HOLY FAMILY CHURCH

Rev. John E. Gillespie (Assistant Pastor) June 1953-Oct.1954

ARCHBISHOP CARROLL HIGH SCHOOL (Boys and Girls buildings integrated in 1986)

Rev. Joseph R. Monaghan (Chaplin, Boys) Dec. 1967-June 1968
Rev. Francis A. Giliberti(Chaplin, Girls) Dec. 1971-June 1973

ARCHBISHOP KENNEDY HIGH SCHOOL (now Kennedy-Kenrick Catholic High School)

Rev. Pasquale R. Catullo (Faculty) June 1964-June 1969
Rev. Nicholas V. Cudemo (Faculty) Feb. 1969-June 1973
Rev. Leonard A. Furmanski
-Faculty Sept. 1960-June 1964
-Director of Vocations Sept. 1963-Sept. 1964
-Principal June 1975- June 1977
Rev. Thomas J. Grumm (Faculty) June 1987- Jan. 1989

BISHOP KENRICK HIGH SCHOOL (Now Kennedy-Kenrick CHS)

Rev. James E. McGuire (Faculty) June 1974- Sept. 1977
Rev. Richard J. McLoughlin (Faculty) June 1973-June 1977
Rev. John P. Schmeer (Faculty) Sept. 1977-Aug. 1990

KENNEDY-KENRICK CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL

Rev. Craig F. Brugger (President) June 1994-June 1996

MERCY VOCATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL

Rev. William J. Dougherty (Minister) June 1993-June 1994

ROMAN CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL

Rev. Leonard W. Brougham, O.Carm. (Faculty) June 1968-June 1978
Rev. John A. Cannon (Faculty) Sept. 1958-June 1963
Rev. John J. Delli Carpini (Faculty) June 1982- June 1986
Msgr. Philip J. Dowling (Faculty) 1957-58
Rev. Raymond O. Leneweaver (Faculty) June 1964- June 1966
Rev. Richard J. McLoughlin (Principal) Aug 1981-June 1990
Rev. John P. Schmeer (Faculty) June 1965-Sept. 1977
Rev. David E. Walls (Faculty) Sept. 1961-July 1962

The Grand Jury's full report can be found at the Philadelphia District Attroney's website. Log on to www.philadelphiadistrictattorney.com. Caution: the report is presented in graphic detail.

 
 

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