Father Joseph Gallagher
Archdiocese of Philadelphia
Left ministry: 1974, 1986
Suspended from ministry: 2002
Permanently restricted: 2005
Died: November 2020
Assigned as follows:
- 1973-1974: St. Monica (Philadelphia, PA)
- 1974: Leave of Absence
- 1974: St. Joseph (Aston, PA)
- 1974-1980: Left Active Ministry
- 1980-1985: St. Aloysius (Pottstown, PA)
- 1985-1986: St. Matthias (Bala Cynwyd, PA)
- 1986: Assumption B.V.M. (Feasterville, PA)
- 1986-1987: Left Active Ministry
- 1987: Leave of Absence
- 1987-1996: St. Agnes (West Chester, PA)
- 1996-1997: Immaculate Conception (Philadelphia, PA)
- 1997-2001: St. Madeline (Ridley Park, PA)
- 2001-2002: Chaplain, Holy Redeemer Health Systems
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Joseph P. Gallagher:
Father Joseph P. Gallagher was ordained a priest in 1973 and served in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. was first publicly identified in the Philadelphia 2005 Grand Jury Report. According to the catalog of allegations attached to the report, in 1974, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia received information that Gallagher was molested (or had recently molested) a 12 year old boy at St. Monica parish. He was removed from ministry and sent for an inpatient evaluation at an undisclosed location. He was then reassigned to St. Joseph in Aston later that year.
No additional action was taken against Gallagher until early 2002, when the depth of the public scandal in the Archdiocese of Boston was becoming regular national news. In March and April 2002, Cardinal Justin Rigali suddenly suspended several accused priests from active ministry, including Gallagher. In 2004, Gallagher agreed to surrender his remaining priestly faculties and accept a life of “supervised prayer and penance,” rather than defend himself in a canonical trial to remove him from the priesthood (involuntary laicization).
Gallagher died in November 2020. He was last known to be residing at Villa St. Joseph retirement home with other priests living “supervised lives of prayer and penance.” He was 73 years old when he died.
For information on accused priest Father Joseph Gallagher, click here.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. 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 Archdiocese of Philadelphia may have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so please do not delay in reaching out to us.