Diocese of Youngstown OH
November 14, 2021
By Justin Huyck
On Wednesday, November 10, 2021, the Diocese of Youngstown received an allegation against Father Marian Babjak of inappropriate physical contact with a minor. In accordance with the Diocesan Safe Environment Policy for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults, Father Babjak was immediately placed on Administrative Leave by the Most Rev. David J. Bonnar, Bishop of Youngstown, and the allegation was reported to Mahoning County Children Services.
During this leave, Fr. Babjak remains a priest of the Diocese of Youngstown with restricted faculties which prohibit him from celebrating the sacraments publicly, wearing clerical attire, or presenting himself as a priest in good standing.
The placement on Administrative Leave does not presume guilt as the purpose of this leave is to conduct a thorough and objective investigation. The Diocese of Youngstown is following its safe environment policy and the policies developed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: Fr. Babjak’s right to a good reputation will be maintained throughout this process, and care will be taken to protect the rights of all parties involved, particularly the person making the allegation and Fr. Babjak. Bishop Bonnar requests prayers for the person making the allegation and for Father Babjak during this difficult time.
Since this is an ongoing investigation, the diocese will not be able to comment on the specifics of the allegation.
The Diocese of Youngstown encourages anyone who has been a victim of misconduct by a clergy member or church employee to contact Dominic Colucy, Victims Assistance Coordinator at 330-744-8451 extension 293, or via the diocesan response line: 330-718-1388. Mr. Colucy’s email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
As the investigation proceeds, Bishop Bonnar has appointed the Very Reverend Martin Celuch, as Administrator, Pro-Tem of Christ Our Savior Parish in Struthers, effective immediately.
Bishop Bonnar comments, “Let us continue to pray for all those who are hurt in any way by the Church. Know also of my continued prayers and support for all parishioners. Together, let us pray that all may be one.”
MORE INFO: Justin Huyck, Coordinator of Media Relations. (Contact information has been provided to members of the media, or email: email@example.com)