Assignment Record – Rev. Norman E. Donohue, s.j.
Summary of Case: Norman E. Donohue was a priest of the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus, ordained in 1939. He spent 42 years in Alaska, six of them as general superior of Jesuits in Alaska. He died in 1983. Donohue was accused in a 2006 lawsuit of sexually abusing boys as young as 5 years-old in Nulato and Kaltag in the 1960s and '70s. In a 2009 lawsuit he was accused of sexually abusing an 11 to 14 year-old boy in Kaltag in the 1960s. Additionally, there were two or more pending claims shown in bankruptcy reorganization documents for Fairbanks Diocese in January 2010.
Ordained: June 16, 1939
San Francisco archbishop was John Joseph Mitty (1935-1961).
|1940||Alma College||Alma||CA||4th year theologian|
Seattle bishop was Gerald Shaughnessy, s.m. (1933-1950).
|1941||Manresa Hall||Port Townsend||WA||tertianship|
Sept. 6, 1941
Vicariate apostolic of Alaska bishop was Joseph Ralph John Crimont, s.j. (1904-1945).
|1943||Holy Cross Mission||Holy Cross||AK||3/4||Holy Cross Mission had a boarding school for boys with 55 students, and a boarding school for girls and orphanage with 70 students. There were 15 "day scholars".|
|1941||1943||Anvik, Banezila, on Yukon River. Sleitmute, Napamute Thuluksak, Akiak, Bethel, on Kuskokwim River||AK||These were stations of Holy Cross Mission.|
Crimont was succeeded by Walter James Fitzgerald, s.j. (1945-1947).
|1946||St. Mary's||Akulurak||AK||2/2||St. Mary's had a boarding school for boys with 34-36 students, and an industrial and training school and orphanage for Eskimo girls with 60-65 students.|
|1943||1946||Alaranak, Panreuvik, Kwiguk and others||AK||These were missions of St. Mary's.|
|1943||1946||over 50 villages or hamlets of Yukon Delta||AK||These were stations of St. Mary's.|
Francis Doyle Gleeson followed Fitzgerald as Vicariate Apostolic of Alaska bishop (1948-1968).
|1950||Chapel of St. Raphael and Mission Day School||Black River||AK||This was a mission of St. Mary's mission in Akulurak.|
|1950||1957||Church of the Little Flower||Aniak||AK||This was a mission of Immaculate Conception in Bethel.|
|1950||1952||St. Joseph's||Kalstag||AK||This was a mission of Immaculate Conception in Bethel.|
|1950||1952||Villages between Bethel and McGrath, on the Kuskokwim River.||AK||These were stations of Immaculate Conception in Bethel.|
|1952||1957||Aniak, Kalskag, Nyac, McGrath||AK||These were stations of Immaculate Conception in Bethel.|
|1950||1957||Superior Regular and Pro-Vicar||AK|
The Fairbanks diocese was established Aug. 8, 1962.
|1953||1966||Council of Vigilance||AK|
|1957||1964||Little Flower of Jesus||Hooper Bay||AK||1/1|
|1957||1964||Scammon Bay||AK||This was a station of Little Flower of Jesus in Hooper Bay.|
|1964||1966||Holy Rosary||Dillingham||AK||1/1||Holy Rosary had a boarding school.|
|1965||1966||Commission for Liturgy, Sacred Music and Sacred Art||AK|
Anchorage archbishop was John Joseph Ryan (1966-1975).
|1967||Copper Valley School||Glennallen||AK||Per Louis L. Renner, s.j.'s Alaskana Catholica.|
Gleeson was succeeded as Fairbanks bishop by Robert Louis Whelan, s.j. (1968-1985).
|1969||Little Flower of Jesus||
• Donohue was accused in a 2009 lawsuit of molesting a boy from 1965-1968, when the boy was 11 through 14 years-old. The abuse is said to have occurred in the Little Flower of Jesus rectory.
|1969||1974||Our Lady of the Snows||
• In a 2006 lawsuit, two men claimed Donohue sexually abused them and other boys between 1967 and 1973 in Kaltag and Nulato. One of the men said he was between 6 and 9 years-old when the abuse occurred, and the other man said he was between 5 and 8 years-old. Both said Donohue would invite them to his living quarters after catechism classes, where he would fondle and perform oral sex on them and have them do the same to him.
|1969||1972||Koyukuk||AK||This was a station of Our Lady of the Snows in Nulato.|
|Aug. 1974||July 1975||St. Joseph's||Tununak||AK||1/1||St. Joseph's had a Montessori school.|
Newtok is listed as a mission of St. Catherine's in the 1976 Directory.
Donohue died Oct. 24, 1983.
Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1940-1984)
• Alaskana Catholica: A History of the Catholic Church in Alaska, by Louis. L. Renner, s.j.
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