Words: Steve Brown
A Catholic priest has been accused of stealing thousands of dollars from church donations and spent it on Grindr hook-ups.
Joseph McLoone, 56, from Pennsylvania, was arrested by police on Wednesday (August 21) after it was claimed the priest stole around $98,405.50 from the St Joseph’s Catholic Church.
During the investigation, it was reported McLoone opened a bank account called ‘St Joseph Activity Account’ after he took over as pastor back in 2011 after the previous priest was accused of concealing child sex abuse in the church.
The account contained money from church donations as well as fees for funerals and weddings.
After the money built up, McLoone reportedly withdrew $46,000 from a location near his beach house in New Jersey and he admitted to using the money for ‘personal relationships’ with other men.
He also put $1,200 in the commissary account of a New York state inmate who wasn’t part of his congregation and said he met the man on Grindr, LGBTQ Nation reported.
During the investigation, detectives found he had made $1,720 total in 17 payments to different men using the app on his phone.
McLoone reportedly built up the money by increasing the fees his church paid for services such as funerals and weddings.
After the Archdiocese of Philadelphia opened an investigation into the church’s finances back in 2018, McLoone was put on leave.
He now faces several charges including felony theft.