Philipsburg priest on leave after allegations of sexual misconduct

Centre Daily Times

lfalce@centredaily.comFebruary 27, 2015

A Philipsburg priest will not be celebrating Mass or performing other duties after being placed on leave.

In a statement Friday, Altoona-Johnstown diocese Bishop Mark Bartchak announced that the Rev. Robert Kelly was “on leave from active ministry” because of allegations of sexual misconduct involving minors dating back more than 30 years.

Kelly is the pastor of Sts. Peter and Paul in Philipsburg and director of the diocesan office of the Propagation of the Faith. He has been in Philipsburg since 2001. Kelly, 66, became a priest in 1974. According to the diocese, he has “served assignments at various parishes throughout the diocese.”

In 2003, Kelly was accused of molesting an altar boy at Our Lady of Victory in State College before his transfer to Philipsburg.

According to his accuser at that time, Kelly sexually abused him numerous times between 1974 and 1977, while he was 12 to 14 years old.

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