Pa. diocese changing offices due to abuse lawsuits

Written by The Associated Press | Jul 1, 2016 11:04 AM
Altoona abuse 2003_AP.Keith Srakocic.jpg

In 2003, Brian Gergely, 33, right, and Kevin Hoover, 30, held up childhood photos of themselves taken around the time they say they were abused by a Roman Catholic priest. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

(Altoona) -- A Roman Catholic diocese in central Pennsylvania is moving its offices to save money as it responds to lawsuits alleging child-sex abuse by its clergy. 

The Altoona-Johnstown diocese sold Bishop Mark Bartchak's residence for nearly $1 million in 2014 to help pay some lawsuit settlements.

The diocese and other defendants have since paid more than $8 million that year to settle lawsuits with more than 80 former students allegedly molested by a Franciscan brother at Bishop McCort High School in Johnstown from 1992 to 2001. 

Other lawsuits have been filed against priests identified as child predators in a grand jury report released by state Attorney General Kathleen Kane in March. 

The diocese will sell its four-building office complex and move to a former school building owned by one of its parishes later this year.

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