Accused of Misspending Charity Money, Popular Pastor Resigns

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KINGSTON -- The Diocese of Scranton says the Pastor of St. Ignatius Loyola Church has resigned, after he told church leaders he misused money meant for charity.

Father John Chmil's resignation was announced following masses this weekend.

In a statement, a spokesperson says the $130,000 in question came from the St. Vincent DePaul account, and that Chmil contacted them about the situation in late May.

As worshipers arrived for the 10:30 a.m. mass Sunday, many were visibly upset about the news.

Nancy Phillips said, "I thought he was nice, I thought he was a good man, I did not know."

Church receptionist Jennifer Carey says the priest was well-liked and the loss is, "A blow." She adds, "I am in shock because he has been nothing but wonderful to me."

Carey says she never saw any red flags and hopes the priest has an explanation his former flock will understand. "Because he is such a good person, I really don't think, the funds went to personal use, I really don't know what they went to."

Some at the service expressed hope that Father Chmil will be able to return to full-time ministry at some point in the future and mentioned the priest is in their prayers.

The Luzerne County District Attorney's office is investigating the case.

Church officials say they hope to have a new pastor in place sometime next month.


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  • Pastor Diddles

    People will look the other way if you’re touching some young boys, but don’t dare mess with their money!

  • Kenny Chesnick

    Typical Catholic Church , never release any details and protect their own. Will he be prosecuted?

  • JP

    Before anyone starts pointing the finger or saying anything bad about the church, let’s find out all the facts first, then make your comments. Fr. Chile is a good priest. I’m sure there was a reason for what he did. Let’s find out why.

  • Here we go again.

    People do realize this is his job, right?? He gets paid to be nice, he gets paid to be holy, he gets paid to be caring and whatever else you need. HE GETS PAID LIKE ANY OTHER WORKING HUMAN!! Why do you think just because its a priest he should be superior to falling??

    • El Ma

      Ceeme, just a word of widsom: Pastors are not infallible. They are human beings, just like the members of their parishes are. This does not, by any stretch of the imagination, excuse what this priest did and he will stand accountable, in due time.

      What anyone adhering to any religion needs to understand is that there is only one Authority (IF they are involved in any organized religion, okay?), and that would be God, Great Creator, etc. Human beings do not and cannot speak “for” God.

      Many look to religion as a means of hope and encouragement – comfort and safety. When all of those eggs are placed in one basket, something is bound to get broken.

      So, let the former Fr. Chmil live with his shame and whatever consequences follow.

  • Birddog420

    The Penn state and the catholic church keep piling up arrests in pa. But people keep supporting the scams !

  • Churchbizzare

    Worst part is, he probably gripped up a bunch of boys just like that Father Ulincy in Frackville. That guy busted up every altar boy he had

Comments are closed.