Update Regarding Reverend Michael Chapman

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia
September 17, 2012

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., has placed Reverend Michael Chapman on administrative leave following allegations of sexual abuse of minors. Father Chapman, Pastor of Ascension of Our Lord Parish in Philadelphia, was originally placed on leave in March 2011 for an alleged violation of The Standards of Ministerial Behavior and Boundaries.

After investigation of the alleged Standards violation by the Multi-Disciplinary Team, and evaluation by the Archdiocesan Review Board, Archbishop Chaput found Father Chapman suitable for ministry in May 2012. As part of the Honesty, Healing and Hope in Christ parish restoration initiative, the Office for Child and Youth protection was working with the parish to prepare for his return. Before Father Chapman's return, the Archdiocese received allegations of sexual abuse of minors against Father Chapman in May 2012. The abuse reportedly occurred approximately thirty years ago. The Archdiocese immediately reported the new allegations to law enforcement and delayed Father Chapman's return to the parish. Since the allegations were received, Father Chapman has not been exercising his ministry publicly or residing at an Archdiocesan parish. After an initial investigation by the Archdiocesan Office for Investigations, the Archbishop placed Father Chapman on administrative leave.

An announcement was made at Ascension of Our Lord Parish this past weekend and counselors were available.

Father Chapman is 56 years old. He was ordained in 1982. He served at the following parishes, schools, and offices: Saint Bonaventure, Philadelphia (1982-1986); Little Flower High School(1983-1985); Saint Agnes, West Chester (1986-1990); Saint Henry, Philadelphia (1990-1991); Priest Vocation Coordinator for the Hispanic Apostolate (1990-1994); Hispanic MinistryCoordinator for Montgomery County (1991-1992); Saint Veronica, Philadelphia (1994-1999); Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul (1999-2001); Ascension of Our Lord, Philadelphia (2001-2011); placed on administrative leave (2011).

If you would like to report a violation of The Standards of Ministerial Behavior and Boundaries, contact the Archdiocesan Office for Investigations at 1-888-930-9010.

If you would like to report an allegation of sexual abuse, contact your local law enforcement agency and/or the Office for Investigations at 1-888-930-9010.

We recognize that this public notice may be painful to victims of sexual violence. If you need support or assistance, victim services are available to you through the Victim Assistance Office of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia at 1-888-800-8780 or




Donna Farrell

Director of Communications









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