Father Raymond Rhoden
Diocese of Pittsburgh
Ordained: October 1976
Withdrawn from ministry: 2002
Assigned as follows:
- 11/05/1976-7/07/1982: Parochial Vicar, Nativity of Our Lord (Pittsburgh, PA)
- 7/08/1982-6/21/1989: Parochial Vicar, St. Francis of Assisi (Finleyville, PA)
- 8/25/1988-6/21/1989: Chaplain, part-time, Monongahela Valley Catholic High School (Monongahela, PA)
- 6/21/1989-10/05/1992: Chaplain, part-time, Our Lady of Sacred Heart High School (Coraopolis, PA)
- 6/21/1989-10/05/1992: Parochial Vicar, St. Joseph (Coraopolis, PA)
- 10/05/1992-10/26/1992: Administrator, St. Philip Neri (Donora, PA)
- 10/26/1992-6/30/1997: Team Ministry -Moderator, Our Lady of the Valley (Donora, PA)
- 6/30/1997-5/17/2002: Pastor, St. James (Sewickley, PA)
- 5/17/2002: Administrative Leave
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations against Father Raymond Rhoden:
Father Raymond Rhoden was ordained a priest in 1976, who served in the Diocese of Pittsburgh. According to media reports, in April 2002, the parents of an adult male met with Diocesan officials to report their son was sexually abused by Father Rhoden between 1976 and 1977. The mother stated they considered the priest a family friend and that he had spent a lot of time at their home. Her son informed them that Rhoden fondled his genitals and performed oral sex on him over a number of months when he was 16 and 17 years of age.
The parents stated that they had previously spoken to Bishop McDowell about the sexual abuse and he told them that he would take care of the allegations. However, they never heard from him again.
When the Diocese of Pittsburgh spoke with the victim over the phone, he told them that Rhoden spent a lot of time in his family home and that when he was 16 and 17 years of age, Rhoden performed oral sex on him. He explained that Rhoden would come into his room after he went to bed and begin to massage his back, fondle his genitals and eventually perform oral sex on him. He stated that this occurred on multiple occasions.
The victim explained that he came forward with this information because his parents told him that Rhoden had recently come over to their home and spent some time alone with his younger brother in his room. His younger brother advised that Rhoden did not touch him.
The victim was asked to write a statement about the abuse, and on May 20, 2002, the
allegations were brought to the attention of the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office.
The Diocese met with Rhoden and he admitted to the sexual abuse and the matter was turned over to civil authorities. Rhoden was removed from his assignment and agreed to go to St. Luke Institute for a physiological evaluation.
The Dicastery examined the case and agreed with the Diocese’s decision to allow Rhoden to remain in retirement. They stated that because the case involved “a single case of abuse” and it “occurred over 25 years ago,” penal procedures and penalties would not apply.
Rhoden moved to Sarasota, Florida and continued to receive $750 per month for sustenance and an additional $400 per month to assist with housing and food for the 4 years between the report of abuse and his death in 2006. He is buried at Christ Our Redeemer Catholic Cemetery in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.
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.