The Reverend Douglass Haefner has resigned from Saint Matthias Parish in Franklin Township NJ after revealing that he "borrowed" up to $500,000 from the church to pay for his "compulsive behaviors."
The pastor confessed his sins to Bishop James Checcio last week during a private meeting. Bishop Checchio told the New York Post that Haefner told him, "I've been sick." The physical and emotional problems I've been struggling with are feeding off each other. Some of my emotional problems have led to compulsive behavior on my part, and the compulsive behavior cost money...I borrowed money from the parish."
Bishop Checchio told 200 of the churches parishioners of the crime during a service days after Haefner admitted to the crime.
The Metuchen New Jersey Diocese is conducting a forensic audit to determine the exact amount the troubled pastor made off with.
Bishop Checcio told law enforcement officials that the amount of stolen money could be over half a million dollars.
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