Fr. Dennis Fronczak – Diocese of Buffalo

Father Dennis Fronczak

Diocese of Buffalo

Ordained: 1975

Removed: 2015

Assigned as follows:

  • 1975-1977      St. Joachim’s Church (Buffalo, NY) 
  • 1978-1983      Holy Trinity (Dunkirk, NY) 
  • 1984                Prince of Peace (Niagara Falls, NY) 
  • 1985-1990      St. John the Baptist (Lockport, NY) 
  • 1991-1999      St. Stephen’s (Grand Island, NY)
  • 2000-2014      St. Joseph’s (Holland, NY)
  • 2014-2015      Our Lady of Pompeii (Lancaster, NY)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Dennis Fronczak:

According to media reports, in October 2015, Father Dennis Fronczak was unexpectedly placed on leave and removed from Our Lady of Pompeii for unspecified reasons. He denied any misconduct, but in June 2018, sexual abuse allegations against him surfaced. 

A woman alleged that Father Fronczak, a family friend, repeatedly fondled her in the 1990s, starting when she was age 9 through 12, while she was a student at St. Stephen School on Grand Island. She said he would call her over to sit on his lap, while students lined up for school dismissal and some teachers were around.

“He’d rub up the back of my Catholic school girl skirt, up my legs,” she said. “It wasn’t a one-time thing. It was often.” 

She would try to avoid him by not making eye contact, and recalled at least one time in which he scolded her for trying to stay away.

“He got mad at me, so that scared me even more,” said the woman.

Her parents didn’t believe her when she explained to them why school children nicknamed him “Father Touchy Feely.” Her father disregarded what she told them because it seemed so inconceivable. 

“We pooh-poohed it. I stood up for him. I had a hard time believing it,” said the victim’s father. He said he realized how wrong he was not to have believed his daughter.

Just two weeks later, Bishop Richard Malone acknowledged the allegations against Father Fronczak and two other priests “have been substantiated and they will remain on administrative leave while the results of the Diocesan investigation are reviewed by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in Rome, who will make the final determination.”

Another allegation of child sexual abuse by Father Fronczak was substantiated in June 2018. In 2003, parents told the Diocese of Buffalo that he showed inappropriate behavior toward their 3-year-old daughter when he was pastor of St. Joseph Church in Holland. They said their little girl was lying on the floor on her belly, looking at a book, and Father Fronczak walked over and stood over her.

“He was straddling her and kept touching her with his feet and legs, squeezing her with his legs. It was very weird behavior for someone who had just met this little girl,” the mother said.

“Our daughter was not harmed, but it was very strange behavior, very upsetting, and after struggling with it, we decided to report it to the bishop’s office,” the mother said.

Although they were told the matter would be looked into, no action was taken and they heard nothing more. Friends of Father Fronczak said he denied ever doing anything inappropriate with a child. 

In August 2019, Father Fronczak was named in a lawsuit filed alleging sexual abuse of a child, 10-year-old child, starting in 1986 through 1988, while he was assigned to St. John the Baptist in Lockport.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Buffalo.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Buffalo, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Buffalo now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.