Archdiocese Admits Accused Predator Priest Is Still Manhattan Pastor as Four More Abuse Suits Are Filed

The City

July 29, 2020

By Virginia Breen and Peter Senzamici

A Manhattan Catholic priest who announced he was stepping down from public ministry last July amid multiple accusations of sexual abuse was on Wednesday named in four more Child Victims Act lawsuits, bringing the total to 11.

But Msgr. John Paddack is still pastor of Notre Dame Church in Morningside Heights, the Archdiocese of New York confirmed Wednesday.

“Because of certain procedures that must be followed under Canon Law, yes, he technically remains the pastor of the parish,” Joe Zwilling, an archdiocesan spokesperson, told THE CITY. “He has stepped away from exercising his priestly ministry, but he has not thus far resigned as pastor.”

The newest suits, filed in Manhattan Supreme Court, span 16 years and allege Paddack molested unnamed students as young as 11 years old at Catholic schools in Staten Island, Manhattan and The Bronx.

The lawsuits name the Archdiocese of New York, under the leadership of Cardinal Timothy Dolan, as a defendant.

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