Catholic Priest

Theodore P. Zabowski

Diocese: Diocese of Pittsburgh

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

An internal Diocese of Pittsburgh document labeled “Chronology of Father Zabowski”, stated that in October, 1995 an allegation of sexual abuse was made against Zabowski. An adult male stated that between 1975 and 1979 he engaged in wrestling with Zabowski and then Zabowski asked him to remove his clothes.  After he removed his clothes, Zabowski fondled him.  This conduct occurred at a church in Pittsburgh.  The male further advised that he and Zabowski took a trip to Canada where they slept in the same bed and Zabowski served him alcohol.  Following the allegations, Zabowski was placed on administrative leave.

In a November, 1995 confidential memorandum, the Diocese noted that Zabowski had acknowledged the possibility of inappropriate touching and acknowledged sharing his bed with boys for “companionship.”

Zabowski was sent to St. Luke’s Institute for an evaluation.  In an evaluation dated November 28, 1995, it was noted that Zabowski admitted to “affectionate hugging” of teenage boys.

In an August, 1996 confidential memorandum, the Diocese observed that Zabowski had admitted that the allegations against him “could potentially be true” and that he should not be involved in any relationship with teenage males.

In a letter dated June 26, 2003 Zabowski informed Bishop Wuerl the “therapy helped him deal with allegations of placing himself with adolescent boys in a sexually inappropriate manner, gave him the ability to deal with and yes, overcome the sexual ignorance and social backwardness of his life.”

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.