The Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, the current Bishop of Scranton, is once again hiding information on a predator in his Diocese. Ed Loch, former music director at St Nicholas Catholic Church in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, was caught arranging to meet someone, who he thought was a fifteen-year-old boy, for sex. Mr. Loch is 74 years old. At midnight on 3 January 2021, while he was waiting for his underage rendezvous, Ed Loch was confronted by Musa Harris, the Luzerne County Predator Catcher. Mr. Harris recorded a conversation with Mr. Loch where he denied he had anything but the noblest of intentions meeting an underage boy at midnight at his home. Right! Mr. Harris has the text exchange between Mr. Loch and the alleged fifteen-year-old where the former music director was very explicit in his expectations for the meeting.
Paul Ciaccia at The Angry Catholic has posted a special report on Ed Loch soliciting an underage boy for sex and the Bishop of Scranton failing to notify the people of St. Nicholas Parish in Wilkes-Barre that their music director and former music teacher at Elmer J. Meyers Junior/Senior High School in Wilkes-Barre. You can watch the video by clicking here. Just be aware, it is pretty ugly stuff.
It seems to be a complete violation of Diocesan policy and a violation of trust for the Bishop to fail to warn the parishioners of St. Nicholas that their “recently retired” music director and organist (yeah, I said it) was preying on underage boys. Compound the harm because this predator taught in a public high school and offered private lessons on the side for decades in the Wilkes-Barre area. It makes my skin crawl.
One reason for the coverup may be the relationship between the Diocese and Ed Loch’s brother, Father Killian Loch. Father Loch worked “as a priest in the Diocese of Scranton included serving for two years as a director of religious formation and five years as principal of a diocesan high school, working in three pastoral assignments; serving as regional vicar for the diocese and working as vicar for priests for the diocese.” According to the Saint Vincent Seminary website, Killian Loch took his final vows as a Benedictine monk in 2014. One could speculate that the Bishop of Scranton may keep the Ed Loch scandal quiet out of loyalty to Killian Loch. Or maybe this is some quid pro quo, one former Vicar for the Diocese of Scranton to another. Surely Killian knows where some of the uglier secrets of the Diocese of Scranton are hidden.
Watch the video and decide if Bishop Bambera should be keeping this information quiet. I think you will come to the same conclusion as I have.
If you have any information or were a victim of Ed Loch, contact the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Child Predator Section at 1-800-385-1044.
Update: You can get another detailed view of this situation from the Church Militant website. This link was forwarded to me by a reader of this blog.