Fr. John Curran – Diocese of Portland

| Sep 20, 2021 | Abuser Profiles, Catholic Church

Father John Curran

Diocese of Portland


Ordained: 1927

Died: 1976

Assignment History:

  • 1927, 1937-1952: St. James (Woodland, ME)
  • 1928: St. Patrick (Portland, ME)
  • 1929, 1960-1962: St. Joseph (Old Town, ME)
  • 1930: St. Mary (Lewiston, ME)
  • 1934-1937: St. Ignatius (Sandford, ME)
  • 1952-1960: St. Michael (South Berwick, ME)
  • 1961-1962: St. Josephs (Old Town, ME)
  • 1962-1972: St Augustine (Augusta, ME)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Fr. John Curran:

Fr. John Curran was ordained a priest in 1927 and served in multiple parishes in the Diocese of Portland during his 41-year career. According to media reports, in 1994 a man testified before a legislative hearing that Fr. Curran had molested him on several occasions in the 1950s at another perpetrator’s home. The abuse involved pornography, fondling, and gifts (money and candy). The alleged victim told his mother about the abuse, and she threatened to wash his mouth out with soap if he “called Fr. Curran queer again.”

In 2002, a man contacted law enforcement with an allegation of sexual abuse that occurred between 1957-1959 against Fr. Curran. The alleged victim was 12 when the abuse began. The boy was struggling in school because his dad was an alcoholic and a domestic abuser. He was sent to Fr. Curran for counseling on two occasions. During each visit to Curran’s private study, the victim says that Curran fondled him. The boy did not report the abuse because he feared that no one would believe him given Fr. Curran’s reputation in the community.

In 2007, the Diocese of Portland received another allegation against Fr. Curran claiming that the priest sexually abused him in 1961 when he was 12 years old. The victim worked part-time at St. Joseph Church in Old Town doing odd jobs around the parish with a group of boys who were all recruited by Fr. Curran. When the victim was alone with Curran in his office, Curran hugged and fondled him. Curran was reassigned to a church in Augusta in 1962. The alleged victim did not disclose the abuse for decades. He finally opened up about the abuse in a group therapy session but the statute of limitations was over. In 2009, the victim was able to petition the city of Augusta to remove the late priest’s name from a local bridge which is now called Calumet Bridge.

In July 2021, the state removed a 34-year statute of limitations for civil claims of childhood sexual abuse. As a result, the victim finally was able to file a lawsuit against the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, claiming Curran sexually abused him in 1961.

Fr. John Curran died in 1976.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Portland in Maine. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Maine, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Portland now have legal options, but filing deadlines may apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Maine and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your options today.