Rev. Michael J. O'Sullivan

Summary of Case: O'Sullivan was a priest of the San Antonio, TX archdiocese who was removed from ministry in 1964, sent away to treatment, and not allowed to return to the archdiocese. The archdiocese did not make this fact known publicly until January 2012, when an accusation surfaced that O'Sullivan sexually abused a minor in the early 1960s. O'Sullivan went on to serve as a priest in the Savannah diocese until at least 1971, after which his whereabouts become murky. The Directories show him to be "On Duty Outside the Diocese" in Savannah until 1983, yet he is not listed in the Savannah pages. Beyond that the Directories list him only as "On Leave", without indicating where, his status changed to "On Leave" from 1994 on. The 1993 Directory does include a phone number associated with O'Sullivan with a San Francisco area code. The Directories exclude him after 2002.

: 1955


Start Stop Parish/Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes
    St. Mary's Fredericksburg TX   This assignment is per the San Antonio archdiocese. The time frame for this assignment is not given.
    St. Peter Prince of the Apostles San Antonio TX   This assignment is per the San Antonio archdiocese. The time frame for this assignment is not given.


San Antonio archbishop was Robert Emmet Lucey (1941-1969)

1960 St. Mary's Victoria TX 3/3, 3/4, 2/4, 2/3  
1955 1960 Our Lady of Lourdes Victoria TX   This was a mission of St. Mary's
1960 1962 Blessed Sacrament San Antonio TX 2/3 Blessed Sacrament had a school with 630 students.
1962 1964 St. Vincent de Paul's

San Antonio

An accusation surfaced in Jan. 2012 that O'Sullivan had sexually abused a minor in the early 1960s.

TX 2/2 St. Vincent de Paul's had a school with 188 students.
1964 1965 On Sick Leave       Per a Jan. 2012 public notice put out by the San Antonio archdiocese, O'Sullivan was removed from ministry in 1964, sent away for treatment, and was not allowed to return to the San Antonio archdiocese.


Savannah bishop was Thomas Joseph McDonough (1960-1967)

1966 On Duty Outside the Diocese/Sacred Heart of Jesus Augusta GA 3/3 Sacred Heart had a school with 150 boys and 135 girls.


McDonough was succeeded as Savannah bishop by Gerard Louis Frey (1967-1972)

1967 On Duty Outside the Diocese/St. Mary's on the Hill Augusta GA 3/3 St. Mary's had a school with 301 boys and 319 girls.
1967 1969 On Duty Outside the Diocese/St. John the Evangelist Valdosta GA 2/2 St. John's had a school with 117-120 boys and 135-109 girls.
1967 1969 On Duty Outside the Diocese/Queen of Peace Lakeland GA   This was a mission of St. John the Evangelist in Valdosta.
1969 1971 On Duty Outside the Diocese/St. Peter Claver's Macon GA 2/2, 1/1 St. Peter's had a school with 104-129 boys and 144-132 girls.


Raymond William Lessard replaced Frey as Savannah bishop (1973-1995)

1983 On Duty Outside the Diocese Savannah GA   The San Antonio archdiocesan pages of the 1972-1983 Directories do not indicate where in the Savannah diocese O'Sullivan might have been. His name was not found listed in the Directories' Savannah diocesan pages.
1983 1994 On Duty Outside the Diocese       The San Antonio archdiocesan pages of the 1984-1994 Directories do not indicate where O'Sullivan was outside of the diocese. The 1993 Directory does index him with a San Francisco, CA phone number (415-508-4776). A search through the San Francisco archdiocesan pages of the 1993 Directory did not yield a listing of O'Sullivan's name.
1994 2002 On Leave      

O'Sullivan continues to be indexed as a priest of the San Antonio archdiocese, but the San Antonio archdiocesan pages of the 1993-2002 Directories do not indicate his whereabouts.

O'Sullivan is not indexed beyond the 2002 Directory, and he is not listed in the 2003 Necrology pages (which indicates death was not the reason for his exclusion).


Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1956-2003)

San Antonio Archdiocese Public Notice, Jan. 29, 2012

Priests in a Parish: We use the following convention to show a priest's place among the clergy of a parish: 1/2 means that he is the first priest listed in the Official Catholic Directory (usually the pastor) and that there is a total of two priests at the parish. The shorthand 3/4 means that the priest is listed third on a four-priest roster. See our sample page from the Directory.

Note: The Official Catholic Directory aims to report the whereabouts of Catholic priests in the United States on January 1 of the Directory's publication year. Our working assumption is that a priest listed in the Directory for a given year was at the same assignment for part of the previous year as well. However, Kenedy and Sons will sometimes accept updates well into the year of publication. Diocesan clergy records are rarely available to correct this information. The Directory is also sometimes misleading or wrong. We have tried to create an accurate assignment record, given the source materials and their limitations. Assignment records are a work in progress and we are always improving the records that we post. Please email us with new information and corrections.

This assignment record collates O'Sullivan's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations as reported in the media. We make no representation regarding the truth of the allegation we report, and we remind our readers that the U.S. legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty. Similarly, individuals who may be defendants in civil actions are presumed not to be liable for such claims unless a plaintiff proves otherwise. Admissions of guilt or liability are not typically a part of civil or private settlements. For more information, see our posting policy.

This assignment record was last updated on Feb. 24, 2012

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