Fr. Joseph D. Karabin – Diocese of Pittsburgh

Father Joseph D. Karabin

Diocese of Pittsburgh

Ordained: 1974

Assigned as Follows:

  • 1974-1979 – Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Midland, PA)
  • 1979-1980 – St. Joan of Arc (Library, PA)
  • 1980 – St. Joseph the Worker (New Castle, PA)
  • 1980-1981 – Holy Name (Duquesne, PA)
  • 1981-1986 – St. Albert the Great (Baldwin, PA)
  • 1986-2002 – Braddock Hospital and Good Shepherd (Braddock, PA)

Summary of Allegations Against Father Joseph D. Karabin:

The first allegation against Father Joseph D. Karabin surfaced in 1980. A victim reported suffering sexual abuse from Karabin during his assignment at St. Joan of Arc. He was sent to a treatment center called House of Affirmation for therapy. He then continued with active ministry.

Another victim was reported in 1985. Because he had sexually abused a child, his superiors discussed reassignment with him. He responded by implying that this instance of abuse was because he was stressed about not having his own pastorate. Another victim, an eighth-grade boy, came to a different clergy member in the same year and said that Father Joseph Karabin had touched his private areas. Bishop Bevilacqua and other members of the Diocese of Pittsburgh were concerned about Father Joseph Karabin’s behavior. He was subsequently sent to St. Luke Institute, a notorious treatment facility for pedophile priests located in Suitland, Maryland, for treatment. St. Luke staff concluded that Father Karabin was neither a pedophile nor an alcoholic, but that he was interested in adolescent boys between 15 and 18 years old. They added that his previous sexually abusive behavior was influenced by alcohol.

In 1991, another victim told the Secretary for Clergy/Religious and Vicar for Clergy, reported that Father Joseph Karabin had sexually abused him when he was a 13- or 14-year-old altar boy. He described being undressed and inappropriately touched by Karabin, who also tried to anally penetrate him. When confronted about this victim’s story, Father Joseph Karabin said he was an alcoholic at the time and did not seem to remember whether or not anything had happened between him and the boy. He then confessed to sexually abusing two other boys.

In 2002, when an article was published ousting the Catholic Church’s practice of reassigning sexually abusive priests to different parishes, Father Joseph Karabin’s faculties were removed. He was not a priest in good standing anymore. The Diocese of Pittsburgh continued to pay his living stipend for many years.

Karabin died in 2016.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Pennsylvania, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Pittsburgh now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or today.