Jesuit Priest Accused of Decades-Old Abuse

December 1, 2010

SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY- A credible allegation has surfaced, according to the Jesuit Order of Priests, concerning Rev. Fr. Neil McLaughlin, an 82-year-old priest who taught at Scranton Prep from 1961 to 1983 and 1985 to 1986. McLaughlin was also a weekend assistant at various parishes across the Diocese of Scranton (see list below).According to a statement on the diocese' website, "The Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus is seeking information about possible abuse of minors by one its members, Neil McLaughlin, S.J., during his ministry in Scranton. This inquiry is being made as a result of information about possible victims in the Scranton area which has been received and because the Province has received a credible allegation from an adult woman who contacted the Jesuits in 2008 regarding an abusive incident she suffered as a young girl in Scranton in 1963. People who believe that they are victims of abuse by Neil McLaughlin should contact their local law enforcement authorities and then should call the Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus at 443-921-1326."Following the alleged incident in 1963, McLaughlin was handed a one-year assignment in Highland Park, NJ. There's no information if the alleged abuse was brought to light at the time, forcing the reassignment. McLaughlin returned to service in the Diocese of Scranton a couple years later.According to the Jesuits, the following is a list of McLaughlin's assignments: 1953-54: Prior to ordination, while a Jesuit scholastic, he taught at St. Joseph's Prep in Philadelphia 1954-1956: He taught at Loyola Blakefield High School in Baltimore. 1959: He was ordained to the priesthood 1961-1983 and 1985-1986: He taught at Scranton Preparatory School. 1964-1965: He resided in and assisted at St. Paul the Apostle Parish, Highland Park, N.J. 1965-1983: He worked part-time as a chaplain at Georgetown University Hospital during the summer. 1971-1995. He celebrated weekend masses at St John Bosco Church, Conyngham, PA. 1985-1986. He served as the Assistant Director of Campus Ministries at the University of Scranton. 1985-2006. He held various administrative jobs with the Alumni Association at Scranton University, including Alumni Chaplain from 2002-2006. 1990's. He celebrated weekend masses at St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Scranton. 1996-2006. He ministered part-time at St. Thomas More Church, Lake Ariel, PA.

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