Diocese of Youngstown: Late pastor misappropriated $160K of parish funds for personal use

Updated: Feb. 26, 2017 at 5:02 PM EST
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STREETSBORO, OH (WOIO) - Officials with the Diocese of Youngstown say they've reported allegations of financial irregularities at St. Joan of Arc parish to the appropriate authorities.

Those officials said complaints alleging those irregularities were brought to their attention in the fall of 2016.

An initial investigation conducted by the Finance Office of the diocese indicated that there was substance to the allegation, they said.

A final audit report indicated that a former pastor, Rev. Pat Ferraro, misappropriated about $160,000 of parish funds for personal use, according to the diocese.

The diocese recently released a statement, which read, in part:

In order to minimize the possibility of this type of activity occurring in the future, the diocese has instituted a policy of procedural financial audits to be conducted on a rotational basis to ensure that sound fiscal management and financial internal controls are being adhered to in all parishes and institutions.  Also, the diocese is increasing the frequency of Parish Finance Workshops to educate and inform council members of the importance of their roles, what information they need to see, and what their responsibilities are in terms of advising pastors regarding financial matters.

Ferraro died unexpectedly in September 2016. He was 51. He was pastor at the church for more than 10 years.

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