Msgr. Joseph McLoone and his secret bank account were on display yesterday at a preliminary hearing in Chester County. McLoone is facing charges for theft of funds from St Joseph Parish in Downingtown, Pa. Along with the alleged theft, the alleged “activities” that he was paying for from this secret account involved funding his “inappropriate adult relationships.” Allegedly .
Msgr. McLoone replaced Msgr. William Lynn as the pastor of St Joe’s after Lynn was charged with conspiracy and child endangerment for his part in the cover up of child sex abuse in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. While McLoone’s role at St Joe’s was to bring healing to the parish, instead he opened the secret bank account within months of his arrival.
There seems to be a camp divided in regards to McLoone and his many years of ministry in the Archdiocese. There are those who believe McLoone to be a holy priest, and others who never bought the act that he was selling. Personally I have heard that I was the target of McLoone’s famous snarky comments even though I have never met him. It seems that Catholic moms who want children protected and assistance for victims are not welcome in McLoone’s world.
I have had the honor of being in his presence a few times, to see him waltz into a room as if he “arrived.” At a baccalaureate mass I ended up behind him in the vestibule and was wondering if I could recruit one of the IHM nuns to grab a ruler and slap his knuckles like they did in the old days. We had already heard whispers of his double life by that time. It was hard to see him acting without a care in the world, knowing that if the rumors were true, it would cause great pain to the parishioners whose parish had already been in the spotlight just a few years before.
McLoone and his attorney put on quite a show outside the courtroom yesterday. He had the demeanor of someone who was there for traffic court. The attorney with her “marked money” comment would have been fantastic if this were a mob trial. I have a feeling that one side of the divided McLoone camp might have gained a few members after watching the news last night.