Assignment Record– Rev. John P. "Jack" Connor
Summary of Case: John P. Connor was ordained for the Camden diocese in 1962. He assisted in parishes in Gloucester,
Haddon Heights and Collingswood NJ, and he taught religion and coached golf at a Eustace Preparatory School in Pennsauken.
In 1984 Connor was arrested and charged with sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy, who was a student at Eustace Prep.
Prosecutors and diocesan attorneys struck a deal that if Connor admitted to the abuse stayed out of trouble for a year his
record would be erased. He was sent to treatment at Southdown Institute in Canada and, in a "bishops helping bishops"
agreement between Camden bishop Guilfoyle and then Pittsburgh bishop Bevilacqua, Connor was allowed to work in the
Diocese of Pittsburgh. He initially worked at a hospital while residing at a Sewickley parish, then was assigned to a parish
in Wexford. When Bevilacqua was made archbishop of Philadelphia, Connor was moved back to that archdiocese and assigned
to St. Matthew's in Conshoshocken. The pastor was not informed of Connor's history. Eyebrows were raised at St. Matthew's
when Connor showered gifts and attention on a third-grade boy. In 1993 Connor's 1984 victim sued and Connor was moved
back to Camden. Connor continued to visit the young boy at the Conshoshocken parish over the next two years, leading both
a nun and a priest there to express their concerns about the visits to the Philadelphia archdiocese. In 2005 the boy's mother told
investigators that she thought Connor had sexually abused her son; the son, however, did not acknowledge abuse occurred. It
wasn't until the 'clergy sex abuse crisis' was making headlines in February 2002 that Connor was removed from active ministry.
He reportedly went on to live in a retirement home for priests in NJ.
Camden bishop was Celestine Joseph Damiano (1960-1967).
|1965||Connor is not indexed in the 1963-1965 Directories.|
|1965||1966||St. Mary's||Gloucester||NJ||5/5||St. Mary's had a school with 796 students.|
Damiano was succeeded as Camden bishop by George Henry Guilfoyle (1968-1989).
|1972||St. Rose's||Haddon Heights||NJ||4/6, 3/6, 3/5||St. Rose's had a school with 818-522 students.|
|1972||1984||St. John's||Collingswood||NJ||3/4, 3/3||St. John's had a school with 335-246 students.|
|1970||1984||Bishop Eustace Preparatory School||
• Arrested in October 1984 on charges of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy, who was a freshman honors student at Eustace Prep. Connor had taken the boy on an overnight trip to Cape May, where they stayed in the priest's trailer. Connor gave the boy beer and proceeded to molest him. The boy told his cousin, who told the boy's mother. She called the police.
|NJ||religion teacher, golf coach||
Eustace Prep was a boys' school until 1972, when it became co-ed. It had 491-391 boys and 123-331 girls during Connor's tenure.
Connor was not prosecuted; in a deal negotiated between the county prosecutor's office and diocesan lawyers, if Connor admitted to molesting the boy and avoided trouble for a year, his arrest record would be erased.
|late 1984||October 1985||
Connor was sent to Southdown Institute in Canada for 8 months of treatment.
Pittsburgh bishop was Anthony Joseph Bevilacqua (1983-1988).
|1986||Sewickley Valley Hospital||Sewickley||PA||This assignment is per news reports.|
|October 1985||1986||St. James||Sewickley||PA||In residence.||This assignment is per news reports.|
|1988||St. Alphonsus||Wexford||PA||3/3||St. Alphonsus had a school with 423-425 students.|
Philadelphia archbishop was Anthony Joseph Bevilacqua (1988- 2003).
• Connor "showered attentions and gifts" on a boy who was in third-grade in the parish school. Although the boy did not disclose abuse, his mother told investigators in 2005 she believed Connor sexually abused her son.
|PA||3/3, 2/4, 2/3||
St. Matthew's had a school with 179-160 students.
The Philadelphia Grand Jury report in 2005 determined that, in a "tradition of bishops helping bishops,"
Camden bishop was James Thomas McHugh (1989-1998), followed by Nicholas Anthony DiMarzio (1999-2003).
4/4, 5/5, 3/3, 3/4
|Connor's 1984 victim of sexual assault sued in 1993 and received an out of court settlement from the Camden diocese. Connor was moved back to Camden at that time. Over the next two years, Connor would continue to visit with the boy from St. Matthew's in Conshoshocken. A priest and a nun informed the Philadelphia archdiocese of their concerns over the visits.|
|2001||2002||St. Teresa of Avila||Bridgeton||NJ||
Connor was removed
He is not indexed in the Directories beyond 2002.
DiMarzio was replaced as Camden bishop by Joseph Anthony Galante (2004-2013), followed by Dennis Joseph Sullivan (2013-).
|NJ||Per news reports, Connor went to live in a retirement home for priests in New Jersey.|
Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons 1963-2005)
• Memo to Bishop Bevilacqua, September 11, 1985
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.