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.