Father Austin Flanagan
Diocese of Scranton
Absent on sick leave: 1990
Removed from ministry: 2002
Assigned as follows:
- 1966: Queen of Peace (Hawley, PA)
- 1966-1969: Nativity BVM (Tunkhannock, PA)
- 1969-1971: St. Mary (Avoca, PA)
- 1971-1973: St. Ignatius (Kingston, PA)
- 1973-1975: St. Mary (Avoca, PA)
- 1975-1979: Little Flower Manor (Wilkes-Barre, PA)
- 1979-1980: St. Thomas the Apostle (Elkland, PA)
- 1980-1982: St. Francis of Assisi (Mildred, PA)
- 1982-1985: St. Mark (Inkerman, PA)
- 1985-1986: St. Agnes (Forest City, PA)
- 1986-1990: Blessed Sacrament & St. John the Baptist (Wilkes-Barre, PA)
- 1990: Absent on Sick Leave
- 1990-1993: St. Thomas Aquinas (Archbald, PA)
- 1993-1994: St. Lucy (Scranton, PA)
- 1994-1998: Most Precious Blood; St. Joseph Medical Center (Hazleton, PA)
- 1998-1999: St. Francis of Assisi; St. Joseph Med. Center (West Hazleton, PA)
- 1999-2002: St. Joseph Medical Center (Hazleton, PA)
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Austin Flanagan:
Father Austin Flanagan was ordained a priest in 1966, who served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Scranton. According to media reports, in 1980, Bishop McCormick received a letter from a parishioner who advised that Flanagan was sleeping in sleeping bags with young boys. Parishioners were “disgusted” with the priest, who would not let anyone into the rectory when he had boys sleeping over.
In June 1990, Flanagan admitted himself to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Harrison, New York. Flanagan related that one month prior to his admission to St. Vincent’s Hospital in New York in 1990, he had been questioned about fondling two boys at a summer camp two years earlier. He did not deny that it happened. He also acknowledged to those treating him that “other similar instances” had happened in the past.
Flanagan continued in active ministry until he was removed in 2002 following the adoption of the Dallas Charter by U.S. Bishops. However, neither the grand jury report nor the assignment history provided by the Diocese of Scranton provide any information about his whereabouts from 1999 to 2002.
In 2005, the Diocese of Scranton was contacted by a 34-year-old who claimed he was sodomized by Flanagan in the rectory at St. Mary’s in 1973. Flanagan denied any wrongdoing.
In 2018, he was first named publicly as accused in the PA Grand Jury Report.
Flanagan is still alive and remains a priest of the Diocese of Scranton (without parish assignment). According to the Diocese, he resides in the Scranton area.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Scranton. 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 Scranton may have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Pennsylvania and nationwide. We can help.