YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — The Catholic Diocese of Youngstown announced in a press release Sunday that there is an ongoing review of financial irregularities at two Youngstown Diocese parishes: Saint Joseph Parish in Alliance and Divine Mercy Parish in Massillon.
The release states the investigation began in December when concerns were uncovered at Saint Joseph Parish related to the time that Father Maciej “Matthew” Mankowski was pastor from 2011 to 2021 but then expanded to Divine Mercy Parish, where Father Mankowski was then the pastor.
The preliminary findings presented by an independent forensic auditor commissioned by the Diocese revealed irregularities that constituted serious breaches of Diocese stewardship standards, the release states.
In July, the Diocese and Father Mankowski mutually agreed on Father Mankowski’s resignation as Pastor of Divine Mercy Parish.
The Diocese release states the investigation has led to evidence that Father Henyk, Pastor of Little Flower Parish in Canton, in conjunction with Father Mankowski, actively failed to cooperate with Diocese investigators and undertook actions that hindered the progress of the inquiry.
Father Henyk has agreed to resign from Little Flower, and Rev. David J. Bonnar, Bishop of Youngstown, has appointed the Rev. Patrick Manning as Administrator Pro-Tem, or Temporary Administrator, at Little Flower Parish.
An update on the investigation and Father Henyk’s resignation was announced to Little Flower, Divine Mercy and St. Joseph parishioners at Masses this weekend, according to the release.
“I want to emphasize that, at this time, we have no evidence of financial irregularities at Little Flower Parish,” Bishop Bonnar said. “We have taken this step with Father Henyk to allow the investigation to proceed and to provide Little Flower with a priest who can fully focus on serving the parish. Now, out of an abundance of caution, we will be conducting a full audit at Little Flower as well.“
The release states that with the Diocesan Finance Council’s unanimous support, the Diocese will be submitting the evidence obtained so far to an outside public law enforcement authority, once the appropriate agency is identified.
The Diocese of Youngstown’s Financial Controls includes two parish auditors and adherence to a Financial Procedures and Control Manual.