Our Lady of Calvary Pastor Resigns Following Abuse Allegations

Click here to read: “Pastor resigns following sex-abuse allegations,” by Sulaiman Abdur-Rahman, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Nov. 10, 2013


“A pastor of a Northeast Philadelphia Catholic church who was accused of sexually abusing children 45 years ago has resigned and moved out of the parish’s residential premises, according to a memo to parishioners.

The Rev. John P. Paul, pastor of Our Lady of Calvary Parish since June 2000, voluntarily resigned “so that the best interest of the parish could be served”….

20 thoughts on “Our Lady of Calvary Pastor Resigns Following Abuse Allegations

  1. Is this the same Fr. Paul that taught at Bishop McDevitt in the 70s and 80s? If so, this story does not surprise me at all. We all knew even back then he was creepy.

  2. I am sure that there will be more news on this story as it is very unclear as to the status of the case within the Archdiocese. Was Fr Paul cleared by the Archdiocesan Review Board?Had the Board even heard his case yet? Cleared and chose to resign? Status pending and chose to resign? Decision to be announced and chose to resign?
    I am not at all referring to the guilt or innocence of Fr Paul, I am referring to the process that takes place or is supposed to take place regarding allegations.
    I also read Fr Paul’s message to parishioners in the parish bulletin and then read the memo on the school website and my thoughts went to the parishioners at Our Lady of Calvary ..my head would be spinning..in the note to parishioners he speaks of being tired and some hopes for future plans and the memo on the school website is where the allegations/investigation are mentioned. I have yet to find anything that mentions a Review Board outcome.

    1. I read the letter online that was read to parish. Certain people were told of these allegations but again … Parents were kept in the dark . Apparently he was being watched and not allowed to be alone with kids ….. How awful!! Parents should be enraged that their children were put in danger as they pay tuition to send them to a school that kept this disgusting secret. Nothing has changed . And fr Paul came to replace fr gilespie who did the same thing . Stop putting money in the collection. That will wake them up!

  3. Another one bites the dust. One wonders how many more are out there, still employed by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who have a history of abuse in their backgrounds. I graduated from McDevitt long before the 70″s and 80″s so I wouldn’t know if it were the same priest. I would hope that more victims would come forward regarding sexual abuse no matter how long ago it happened.It is extremely important for all of us, both victims and non victims alike to know the extent of the problem. It is also important for the Church Hierarchy to know that this will not go away. From Pope Francis{ who seems to be enjoying photo ops with tourists] down to the local Bishops, We will not let go of this.

  4. When the abuse occurred did the rcc notify the Police or did they await until now to do so ? Was his case reviewed and what disclosure for the ” secret files” was made ? This has a fetid aroma, AGAIN!

  5. I am from OLC and I am spitting nails. He is the pastor of a parish with A SCHOOL! We were NOT notified when the investigation was started. I have had it. I’m done. Looking for a new church

  6. Worried Parishioner and Sue can you link the letter that was read to the parish? Parents were not notified of the investigation while it was ongoing?

  7. I was a student at McDevitt in the ’80’s. It was widely know that Fr. Paul was a “ladies man” – he would pick a girl or two from each class and they would be his favorites. Dinner – movies – etc. I witnessed some things first hand myself. I was always surprised he was never accused of abuse – I guess the girls figured that wasn’t abusing little boys so it was ok. I read the note on the OLC website and it is very vague. I would encourage anyone who knows of any incidents to call the Archdiocese on Monday morning!

  8. Here is the Archdiocese statement:

    Father John Paul resigned as pastor of Our Lady of Calvary Parish earlier this week. He came to that decision of his own accord amid the stress and anxiety relative to an investigation into alleged misconduct on his part. Earlier this year, the Archdiocese received allegations that Father Paul had sexually abused minors over 40 years ago during his time as a seminarian. Father Paul has denied these allegations.

    Consistent with Archdiocesan policy, all information concerning the allegations was immediately provided to law enforcement, which declined to press charges. The Archdiocese then began its own internal investigation in accordance with its policy. That process has not yet concluded.

    The safety and well-being of our children and young people is of the utmost concern to the Archdiocese. Father Paul was allowed to remain at the parish during this time only after careful consideration of all available facts by the Archdiocesan Review Board, the Vicar for Clergy, the Director of Investigations, the Director of the Office for Child and Youth Protection and the Archbishop. Throughout this time, and as a matter of precaution, Father Paul’s ministry had been restricted in that he had no unsupervised contact with minors. Appropriate notification of his restrictions was made to pertinent parties and a monitoring and support plan was implemented and followed.

    In the interest of transparency, the Archdiocese shared information surrounding Father Paul’s decision to resign at Masses at the parish this weekend. Counselors were made available to speak with anyone who wished to do so.

    Archbishop Chaput has appointed Father John Babowitch as the new pastor of Our Lady of Calvary Parish. His assignment is effective December 2nd.

  9. What we have before is yet another example of conduct, behavior, decision-making by certain leaders, lay and religious, in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and its intent is to keep vital and necessary information, facts and details away from the parishioners, families, and parents regarding conduct and behavior of the sexual abuse of children.

    The inescapable conclusion from this and all of the other details, evidence, documents, etc. in the two Grand Jury Reports and myriad of criminal and civil cases is that certain archdiocesan leaders are clearly not honorable men. Honorable men would never, ever put children at risk of sexual abuse over such an extended period of time, as in this case, without notification to their parents and families.

    And, for the upcoming week, we have the annual meeting of the USCCB in Baltimore where they will elect a new president. All I can say is that “USCCB Leadership” is clearly an oxymoron.

    If I cannot trust you with my children, I certainly cannot trust you with my money (parish contributions).

  10. Some thoughts:

    1. The internal review by the Archdiocese has not concluded.

    2. The police “declined” to press charges. Declined or were unable? I don’t know of any sex crimes that date back 40 years where charges are able to be filed due statute of limitations. I make this statement not in relation to the guilt or innocence of this particular priest but I am pointing out that charges from 40 years ago would not be able to be filed against anyone .

    3.”The safety and well-being of our children and young people is of the utmost concern to the Archdiocese” Really? Then who better to inform than the PARENTS of the children of the parish and the school.

    4. “Throughout this time, and as a matter of precaution, Father Paul’s ministry had been restricted in that he had no unsupervised contact with minors. Appropriate notification of his restrictions was made to pertinent parties and a monitoring and support plan was implemented and followed.” Who were the pertinent parties? Were the people who decided on this plan the ones on that parish campus making sure that every child was safe? What employee at the parish could have a job that included monitoring an adult? Who is qualified to do this?

    5. It mentions Fr Paul’s stress and anxiety. Can you imagine the stress and anxiety of the PARENTS who are now just finding out this news? And the CHILDREN? If people do not think children are affected by allegations,removals and resignations, they are dead wrong.

    6. When the former CFO of the Archdiocese was being investigated for embezzlment, was she allowed to stay on the job? Was she merely restricted from unsupervised contact with the money?

    &. Parents at parish schools cannot so much as volunteer in a crowded cafeteria without having every security clearance and training up to date but a priest with allegations/ being investigated can technically be in charge of the entire parish?

    1. How many more parish children are in danger because of “the secret” pack that exists among the clergy? The fact that not one clergy member has spoken out tells the real story .I know in my parish at St Jerome ..it is denial .. denial..denial.

      1. worried parishioner..the question you asked a few weeks ago about a priest’s name being removed from the clergy list has opend up many questions which I am still seeking answers. Thank you for that question…it will be interesting to see where this road leads.. not in relation to the particulr priest you asked about but rather the policy/protocol used for decisions. I have not forgotten about you..hopefully will have some info in the near future.

        1. It is so maddening that the chuch knew of this 45 years ag and did nothing. He was my religion teacher at McDevitt and he was a fraud then. Are you reading this Fr Paul? How many innocent girls did you take to your Ocean City home? I know I was one of them but was smart enough to figure you out. Unfortunately others were not as lucky as me. I know you know who I am talking about. I have been waiting for this day. I will sit back and happily watch your downfall. You are a disgrace and a sick coward.

          1. Dear McDevitt Grad,
            I am a clergy abuse survivor from the archdiocese of phila. Two of my perps were on the famous Fr. Lynn list that was almost distroyed. If you need to contact me please ask kathy kane and she will provide you with my email. I have been supporting survivors and people who witnessed their actions {priests} for years. I understand your rage, I see it with every word. Thank you for posting and I am very grateful you were wise enough to not fall a victim of this priest.

    2. Excellent point if he was accused of something with talking money. They would pull him off the job in a second. I hope they are checking his computer.

  11. I remember father John Paul took this Vietnamese girl to beach one weekend. She was troubled (staying at relatives at adoptive family) and happened to be quite attractive. I remember thinking what a pig the father was. I had him for religion and also thought he was 100% creep. So, is that 3 perv McDevitt priests from the early 80s? Sickos!

Leave a Reply