Father Richard Giuliani
Diocese of Allentown
Left ministry: 1977
Assigned as follows:
- 1968: St. Peter (Reading, PA)
- 1969: St. Canicus (Mahanoy City, PA)
- 1969-1970: Our Lady of Perpetual Help (Bethlehem, PA)
- 1970: Notre Dame High School (Easton, PA)
- 1970-1973: Sacred Heart (Miller Heights, PA) – in residence
- 1973-1974: Notre Dame High School (Easton, PA)
- 1974-1977: Cardinal Brennan High School (Fount Springs, PA)
- 1974-1976: St. Vincent de Paul (Girardville, PA)
- 1977: Absent without leave from Diocese
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Fr. Richard Giuliani:
Fr. Richard Giuliani was ordained a priest in 1968, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Allentown. According to media reports, in 2018, his name was included on the Diocese list of clergy credibly accused of child sexual abuse. He was also named publicly as accused in the PA Grand Jury report. It noted the Diocese of Allentown has received multiple allegations that Giuliani (whose name has appeared in the media and in the Official Catholic Directory as “Guiliani” and “Giuliani”) sexually abused children entrusted to his care over the past two decades:
In 2003, a victim reportedly wrote to Bishop Edward Cullen that she had been sexually abused by Giuliani from the ages of 14 through 18 (1971-1975) at Notre Dame High School in Easton, Pennsylvania. She was experiencing trouble at home, and Giuliani seized upon the opportunity to ‘counsel’ her through her troubles. Instead, his comforting hugs soon gave way to sexual contact of all types, including mutual fondling, digital penetration (forcible), oral copulation of the priest, and simulated sodomy. She remembers that he was often intoxicated during the events, which occurred at school, in his car, and in his sister’s home. Giuliani later asked the victim to marry him; when she refused, he stopped all communication with her.
The victim reported that two priests of the Diocese of Allentown, Fr. Leo Houseknecht and Fr. William Jones, were well aware of the abuse while it was happening and did nothing to stop it. Indeed, Houseknecht, who is himself accused of abusing students as a priest, would often hug the victim, grinding his erect penis into her body. Jones would say very crude things to the child at school as well. He, too, became the subject of sexual misconduct allegations.
As a young woman, she reported to her abuse to two other priests of the Diocese of Allentown, and neither took any action to address the problem either. Her allegations were never reported to law enforcement until 2011, more than seven years after she wrote her letter to Bishop Cullen and more than 35 years after priests of the Diocese of Allentown had actual knowledge of her abuse.
In 2004, another victim reportedly approached Bishop Cullen to report that she was abused at Cardinal Brennan High School during Giuliani’s brief tenure there. She reported that he approached her in the gym as she did her homework and asked her to go Christmas shopping with him. As they rode in his car, he fondled her breasts and buttocks. Again, the 2004 allegation was not reported until 2011, over seven years after Bishop Cullen personally became aware of it.
Giuliani’s assignment history – which features many very short, abbreviated assignments to schools – is certainly filled with red flags that would be investigated in greater detail during the course of any litigation against the Diocese of Allentown. While there may be innocent reasons why he was reassigned so frequently after short stints in each place, based upon our firm’s experience, there could also be very sinister reasons such as suspicions or reports that he was sexually abusing children.
Giuliani’s current whereabouts are unknown, but he is believed to be living in the St. Augustine, Florida, area.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Allentown. 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 Allentown may have legal options against the Diocese of Allentown.