An Irish American priest made headlines made headlines for all the wrong reasons when he stole parish money – to use on Grindr dates.
Fr Joseph McLoone, of St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, took almost $100,000 in six years.
He also used nearly €90,000 to pay for a beach house in Ocean City, New Jersey.
The money he stole came from donations, wedding and funeral fees and other gifts to the church.
In early 2018, the archdiocese discovered he had a secret bank account and was diverting money meant for the church.
Fr McLoone, whose parents both emigrated to the States from Co Donegal, was confronted by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
He admitted he had spent church funds on ‘personal relationships’ with other men.
The court heard that Fr McLoone would send money to men he met on the gay dating app Grindr using online payment methods Square and J-Pay.
The Chester County District Attorney said in a statement: “Father McLoone held a position of leadership and his parishioners trusted him to properly handle their generous donations to the church.
“Father McLoone violated the trust of the members of St Joseph for his own personal gain.”
Fr McLoone is now out on bail after being arrested and charged with multiple counts of felony theft.
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling