Father Charles Ruffenach
Diocese of Allentown
Assigned as follows:
- 1930-1931: Holy Ghost (Bethlehem, PA)
- 1931-1934: St. Mary of the Assumption (Philadelphia, PA)
- 1934-1979: St. John the Baptist (Stiles, PA)
- 1979-1980: Holy Family Villa (Bethlehem, PA)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Fr. Charles Ruffenach:
Fr. Charles Ruffenach was ordained to the priesthood in 1930, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Allentown. He was ordained for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and incardinated into the Diocese of Allentown when it was formed in 1961. According to media reports, in 2001, the Diocese of Allentown received an allegation that Fr. Ruffenach abused a young boy from approximately 1945 until 1953 (Grades 1-8) at St. John the Baptist.
Fr. Ruffenach referred to the inappropriate touching as “washing his penis” to normalize it with the boy. According to the 2018 PA Grand Jury report, the victim confronted Ruffenach in the 1980s. Fr. Ruffenach denied any wrongdoing. Instead, he told the man that it was his doing, that he (the boy) had asked Ruffenach to wash his penis.
Fr. Ruffenach retired in 1979, and died in 1980.
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