Catholic Priest

Edward J. Shoback

Ordained: 1967
Diocese: Diocese of Scranton

From Report I of the 40th Statewide Investigating Grand Jury for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania:

On June 27, 2002, the Diocese of Scranton met with a male in his thirties who stated that he had been sexually molested by Father Edward J. Shoback 25 years earlier.  The male was in theological formation and the Diocese of Raleigh terminated its relationship with him. Additionally, the St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore dismissed him.  The male stated that his troubles in the seminary were due to the sexual abuse. The male stated that he did not want to pursue the matter with Shoback because he liked him.  He stated that he had put the matter behind him following several years of therapy and did not want to see Shoback defrocked.

When confronted, Shoback denied the allegation.

On July 19, 2004, an adult male contacted the Diocese to report that he was sexually abused by Shoback in 1981 at the age of 12.  The incident occurred when Shoback invited him to watch a movie. Shoback removed the victim’s clothing and performed oral sex on him at that time. The victim stated that he was certain that Shoback had sexually abused other boys. Three days later, a second male contacted the Diocese after speaking with the victim. He reported that Shoback had touched his genitals on the outside of his clothing.  A third adult male then contacted the Diocese on July 26, 2014, and reported that Shoback introduced him to wine/liquor and pornography. The male reported sexual abuse by Shoback involving genital contact. When confronted, Shoback admitted to the allegations made by the first victim. He was removed from ministry.

As a result of the 2002 Charter, the Diocese was required to place a notice in the church bulletins that were distributed to congregations to which Shoback had been assigned. The notice requested that anyone who may have been sexually abused by Shoback to come forward.  As a result of the notice, three additional victims came forward.  The statute of limitations had expired, however, in connection with their cases. The Diocese offered to assist with counseling services.

Complaints received in 2007 and 2009 were referred to the Luzerne County District Attorney’s Office.

Additional information regarding the widespread sexual abuse of children within the Catholic Dioceses of Pennsylvania and the systemic cover up by senior church officials is compiled in the Pennsylvania Diocese Victim’s Report published by the Pennsylvania Attorney General following a two-year grand jury investigation.  A complete copy of the Report is available on the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s website.