Fr. Timothy Sperber – Diocese of Harrisburg
On Duty Outside Diocese (Archdiocese of Miami): 1992-2000
Suspended from ministry: 2000
Assigned IN THE DIOCESE OF HARRISBURG as follows:
- St. Joan of Arc (Hersey, PA)
- St. John Neumann (Lancaster, PA)
- St. Philip the Apostle (Millersville, PA)
Summary of Allegations against Fr. Timothy Sperber:
According to the grand jury report, the Diocese of Harrisburg received an allegation in 2004 that a priest named “Fr. Tim” sexually abused her in 1979 when she was 9 or 10 years old. She attended St. Joan of Arc school in Hershey and struggled with math. The school principal asked Fr. Tim Sperber, who was a young priest in the parish, to tutor her.
According to the victim, she was called to the rectory during the school day. The priest was very touchy-feely with her, and eventually he told her to remove her shirt. He fondled her small breasts and nipples before telling her to turn around. He then rubbed something against her back that she now believes was his finger or erect penis. This lasted until she heard him make a strange noise and then her back was wet. She realized as an adult that he ejaculated on her back; all she knew at the time is that her back was sticky the rest of the day.
The following year, when she needed a tutor again, she begged the principal not to make her see Fr. Tim again, and told him what happened. The principal got very angry and told her that she was a liar and “a demon child.” She was expelled from St.Joan of Arc.
In 1992, Sperber took an assignment in the Archdiocese of Miami to reportedly tend to an ailing mother. In the Archdiocese of Miami, Sperber served at St. Gregory Church in Plantation and St. Boniface Church in Pembroke Pines before taking a leave of absence in 1998. When he was set to return to Harrisburg for assignment in 2000, he wrote to the Bishop and informed him that he had no intention of returning to his ministry. He was suspended for failure to report to his assignment. His current status with the Diocese of Harrisburg is unclear as the Diocese has never stated that he was laicized.
Sperber’s name appears on the Diocese of Harrisburg’s August 2018 list of accused priests. Unfortunately, very little information about the allegation(s) against Sperber was provided, though it did give a lengthy disclaimer about the allegation that the victim, a female, accused a “Father Tim” of molesting him and Sperber was the only “Tim” assigned to the parish at the time of the alleged abuse.
Sperber is alive and believed to be residing in the Port Charlotte, Florida. As of 2018, he was working as a music minister at a local Church of Christ in Punta Gorda.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims of sexual abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg and throughout Pennsylvania. The Diocese of Harrisburg filed for federal bankruptcy protection in February 2020. Anyone sexually abused by a priest or employee of the Diocese of Harrisburg may be entitled to file a claim against the Diocese in these bankruptcy proceedings, but very strict filing deadlines apply. Most victims of abuse in the Diocese of Harrisburg will never be able to take action against the Diocese of Harrisburg if they miss this bankruptcy filing deadline, so it is important that you contact us immediately to discuss your potential case.