Fr. Francis A. Siler – Diocese of Pittsburgh

| Dec 17, 2018 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father Francis Siler

Diocese of Pittsburgh

Francis Siler Horowitz Law

Ordained: May 1963

Withdrawn from active ministry: July 5, 2002

Died: December 10, 2015 (age 78)

Assigned as follows:

  • 5/20/1963 -6/14/1970: Nativity (Broughton, PA)
  • 6/15/1970 -12/05/1972: St. Bernard (Mt Lebanon, PA)
  • 12/06/1972- 8/07/1974: St. Titus (Aliquippa, PA)
  • 8/08/1974 -5/20/1975: Leave of Absence
  • 5/21/1975 -10/10/1976: St. Catherine (Wildwood, PA)
  • 10/11/1976- 2/07/1983: St. Margaret (New Castle, PA)
  • 2/08/1983 -5/02/1984: St. Catherine (Wildwood, PA)
  • 5/12/1984 -6/30/1985: St. Agnes (West Mifflin, PA)
  • 7/01/1985 -2/23/1986: Leave of Absence, Health Reasons
  • 2/24/1986 -9/27/1987: Allegheny Valley Hospital, PA)
  • 9/27/1987 -2/25/2002: St. Mary Mercy (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • 2/25/2002 -7/05/2002: Leave of Absence

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Francis Siler:

Father Francis Siler was ordained a priest in 1963, who served in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. According to media reports, Diocesan records revealed a reference made in a St. Bernadine Clinic report that Father Siler had “sexual problems with adolescents”  in 1972. As a result, Bishop Leonard changed Siler’s assignment.  In 1974, Bishop Leonard wrote to the House of Affirmation that “in the last years years the problem arose about which i spoke to you in a phone conversation.”

In a 1985 memorandum written to Bishop Bevilacqua, a priest reported that Frank Siler made a pass at a young boy whose father was a policeman. The irate father was about to take the matter to court, which necessitated the quick removal of Father Siler from the post.”

In 1994, an adult male came to see Siler to confront him about molesting him as a child. After being confronted by the man, Siler required hospitalization at St. Francis for suicidal feelings. Thereafter, he was sent to St. Luke Institute Continuing Care Workshop.

During a workshop held in May 1994, St. Luke’s expressed concern that Siler was engaging in parish ministry. The concern was that because he had a history of sexual behavior with minors, and since he had been experiencing relapse behavior around sexual issues, there was some concern about the possibility of his behavior with minors recurring. It was suggested that Siler avoid all contact and ministry with minors.

In 1995, an adult male reported to the Diocese of Pittsburgh that Siler fondled him on several occasions when he was an altar boy at St. Catherine church and in the second or third grade. Siler denied the allegations. Some of the dates provided by the male did not correspond to Siler’ s age or assignment at the time, however, Siler was placed in restricted ministry.

In December 2002, another allegation of sexual abuse was made against Siler. An adult male reported that Siler had touched him inappropriately when he was a child. This occurred in a church in Beaver County between 1972 and 1973. The male demanded answers from the Diocese as to what happened with Siler and why he was “protected.”

In November 2011, the Diocese received another report of sexual abuse by Siler that occurred between 1972 and 1974 at a Beaver County church. An adult male reported that Siler had groped and fondled him through his clothes when he was just a child. He also reported attempted sexual abuse by another priest, Father Hoehl.

Francis Siler died in 2015 and is buried in Queen of Heaven Catholic Cemetery in McMurray, Washington County, Pennsylvania.

In November 2018, a lawsuit was filed accusing Francis Siler of sexual abuse of abuse two children.  One of the alleged victims reported abuse at St. Catherine parish and  the other reported abuse at St. Margaret parish.

He was first named publicly as accused in a priest profile in the 2018 Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. 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 Pittsburgh may have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.

Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your options today.