Metro Weekly

Catholic priest accused of spending church money on Grindr and boyfriends

Monsignor Joseph McLoone allegedly stole almost $100,000 and spent it on "personal relationships" with other men

Joseph McLoone and St. Joseph Catholic Church — Photos: Chester County District Attorney / Facebook

A Catholic priest in Pennsylvania has been accused of stealing almost $100,000 from his church and spending the money on Grindr, boyfriends, and a beach house.

Monsignor Joseph McLoone, former priest at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Downingtown, Pa., was arrested following a yearlong police investigation.

McLoone, 56, is accused of opening a secret checking account in 2011, which he used to steal $98,405.50 in donations from parishioners and other church funds over the next seven years, Philadelphia Magazine reports.

He allegedly used the funds to pay for “personal relationships” with other men, sent thousands of dollars to people he met using gay dating app Grindr, and also spent money on dinner, travel, and a beach home in Ocean City, New Jersey.

“Father McLoone held a position of leadership and his parishioners trusted him to properly handle their generous donations to the church,” the Chester County D.A.’s office said in a statement. “Father McLoone violated the trust of the members of St. Joseph for his own personal gain.”

McLoone, who was arrested Wednesday, Aug. 21, faces 18 charges in total, including multiple counts of felony theft.

In a statement to Philadelphia Magazine, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia called the charges “serious and disturbing.”

The archdiocese reportedly carried out its own investigation prior to the police investigation, during which McLoone allegedly admitted to using the church funds.

“The Archdiocese and the parish will continue to cooperate with law enforcement as the criminal matter enters its next phase,” the archdiocese said. “Pending the outcome, Monsignor McLoone remains on administrative leave.”

McLoone, who resigned as pastor at St. Joseph last year, has been released on a $50,000 bail.

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Rhuaridh Marr is Metro Weekly's online editor. He can be reached at rmarr@metroweekly.com.

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