clergy sex abuse

Church Bars Mass. Priest Accused of Child Sex Abuse From Ministry

"He is expected to dedicate his life to praying for victims and repenting of his past offenses," the Archdiocese of Boston said

This Nov. 12, 2017, file photo shows Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Marlborough, Massachusetts.
Dina Rudick/The Boston Globe via Getty Images, File

A Catholic priest that led parishes in Massachusetts has been found guilty of sexually abusing a child in the 1960s by a church panel and barred from public ministry, the Archdiocese of Boston said Friday.

Paul J. McLaughlin, a former pastor of St. Peter Parish in Lowell and Immaculate Conception Parish in Marlboro, will not be allowed to function in any manner as a priest, meaning he can no longer celebrate public Mass, provide spiritual direction or wear clerical attire.

"He is expected to dedicate his life to praying for victims and repenting of his past offenses," the archdiocese said. "In this way, the Church seeks even here to prevent any future abuse and to repair the injustice that has already taken place."

A phone number listed for McLaughlin, who is 91 and lives in California, wasn't accepting calls Saturday.

The archdiocese said he was ordained in 1955 and served in churches across the state, including in Peabody, Arlington and Swampscott. He was also chaplain at Regis College in Weston.

McLaughlin was placed on administrative leave in September 2001 when the allegations surfaced. The Boston Globe reports three men accused McLaughlin of sexually abusing them as children in the 1960s.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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