The Diocese of Scranton will provide counseling services to our priests that are confidential and free of charge.

Remember, in a crisis situation, calling 911 or the suicide prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 will provide the timeliest support. 

The following are three opportunities available for outpatient services:

  1. John Vianney Center – contact 888-993-8885
    • The Diocese of Scranton has entered into an agreement with SJVC and believes this relationship provides counselors that have the most experience working with priests and provides a high level of confidentiality as they reside outside of the diocese.
    • This agreement mimics an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for counseling services in which a priest may contact SJVC directly to engage in outpatient counseling without the prior approval of the Vicar for Clergy. The initial intake session and subsequent counseling sessions can be in-person or via telehealth.  Each priest will have the opportunity to receive up to 8 sessions.  Following the 8th session, the priest will be encouraged to contact the Vicar for Clergy to discuss their personal situation.   Should the priest choose not to contact the Vicar for Clergy for approval of further counseling, the therapeutic relationship will be closed, or the priest may continue in counseling at his own expense.

Invoicing for services rendered will be billed monthly to the Diocese and include the following: provider, patient number, dates of service, and correlating fee.  No personally identifiable information will be disclosed, and your rights are protected to the fullest extent of HIPAA.

Under this agreement, the priest is offered complete confidentiality for the first 8 sessions.  Only after the 8th session will the priest be encouraged to discuss their personal situation with the Vicar for Clergy.

    • Important things to know:
      • SJVC’s staff are mandated reporters. Therefore, if there is suspected abuse of a minor, the staff are required by law to notify the authorities per state reporting procedures.
      • SJVC’s staff are designated as “duty to warn” providers. If a threat against another person is disclosed, staff are required to report the threat and warn the affected party.
  1. Utilize Counselor covered under Diocesan Health Plan
    • Contact a counselor directly that is covered by our health insurance plan. NO permission is needed by the Diocese and records are confidential in compliance with HIPAA. Please use the following link to identify a provider in your area:
    • List of Counselors
      • Note:  The link below will connect you to the Highmark Log-In Page.
  1. Utilize a counselor not covered by Diocesan Health Plan
    • Contact the Vicar for Clergy to request approval to utilize an out of network counselor. The request is needed for payments to occur.  There is no obligation to divulge the reasoning for which counseling is needed.

Should you have any questions about how to access counseling support, please do not hesitate to contact the Vicar for Clergy.