Father Leo Houseknecht
Diocese of Allentown
Assigned as follows:
- 1968-1971: Sacred Heart of Jesus (Palmerton, PA)
- 1971-1973: Reading Central Catholic High School (Reading, PA)
- 1973-1976: Notre Dame High School (Easton, PA)
- 1976-1977: Nativity B.V.M. High School (Pottsville, PA)
- 1977-1978: Marian Catholic High School (Hometown, PA)
- 1978-1990: Immaculate Conception (Kelayres, PA)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Fr. Leo Houseknecht:
Fr. Leo Houseknecht was ordained a priest in 1968, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Allentown. According to media reports, he was named in a civil lawsuit filed against the Diocese of Allentown in 2004 by a woman who alleged he sexually abused her at Notre Dame High School in Bethlehem Township in the 1970s. The plaintiff alleged that Houseknecht hugged her inappropriately, grinding his erect penis into her, and often speaking to her in very crude and lewd ways.
According to another woman, Houseknecht was one of two priest friends of Fr. Richard Giuliani, another priest accused of sexual abuse, who knew that Giuliani was sexually abusing her, yet failed to stop it. She too alleged that Houseknecht hugged her inappropriately while she was a teenager.
In 2018, his name was included on the Diocese of Allentown list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse. He was also named publicly as accused in the PA Grand Jury report.
Houseknecht remained a priest in good standing until the time of his death in 1990 at age 53.
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