Altoona-Johnstown Diocese Dismisses Two More Priests

Associated Press, carried in Centre Daily Times
June 29, 2004

HOLLIDAYSBURG, Pa. - The Altoona-Johnstown Catholic Diocese has removed two more priests accused of sexual abuse, a diocesan publication reported.

Bernard V. Grattan, who was transferred from hospital ministry in Johnstown to medical leave status, was dismissed from the priesthood, according to the June 28 edition of The Catholic Register.

Martin D. McCamley, who was suspended from all priestly duties last year, retired without any rights to present himself as a priest, the publication said.

The two priests had been named in 13 lawsuits alleging sex abuse. The diocese recently agreed to a $3.7-million settlement of those lawsuits, doubling payments in such cases since 1994 to nearly $7 million.

"Grattan, as a former priest of the diocese, has not been allowed to function for the past several years. This dismissal allows him to live as a nonordained lay person of the church," according to the announcement.

Grattan was accused of molesting a boy at St. Patrick's church in Newry, Blair County. He became the diocese's third priest to be removed by the Vatican following allegations of sex abuse.

McCamley, former high school music director, was accused of making a young male student sleep in the same bed with him during a field trip. He was placed on administrative leave in March 2003 and was most recently assigned as pastor of Our Lady of Victory Church in State College.

Diocese officials called the dismissals part of "an ongoing process" to conform with new national policy to combat sex abuse in the church.


Any original material on these pages is copyright © 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.