Rev. Gary Jacobson

Summary of Case: There were several complaints of sexual abuse and inappropriate sexual behavior toward girls and young women made to the archdiocese during the 1980s and 1990s. He was sued in 2002, along with the archdiocese. The last known instance of a report to church officials regarding concern about his inappropriate behavior was in 2002. Jacobson was still involved in parish work during his retirement in 2002.

: 1965


Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Portland bishop was Edward Daniel Howard (1926-1966)

1966 Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Portland OR


In residence

The Cathedral had a school with 264 students.


Bishop was Robert Joseph Dwyer (1966-1974)

1967 St. Anthony's Portland OR


In residence

St. Anthony's had a school with 120 students.
1967 1968 St. Thomas More Portland OR


In residence

St. Thomas More had a school with 355 students.1968
1968 1973 All Saints Portland OR 2/4, 3/4 All Saints had a chool with 466-357 students.
1973 1974 St. Paul's Eugene OR 2/2 St. Paul's had a school with 232 students.


Cornelius Michael Power replaced Dwyer as bishop (1974-1986)

1976 St. Stephen's Portland OR



St. Stephen's had a school with 245 students.
1976 1978 Immaculate Conception Stayton OR


In residence

Immaculate Conception had a school with 294 students.
1978 1980 Queen of Peace


Accused of molesting a girl from this parish during weekly visits with her family to have dinner and watch football. The incidents of abuse went on from the time the girl was 7-9 years old. The girl reported that her best friend was also molested by Jacobson also during a sleepover at her house (archdiocesan documents).

OR 1/2, 1/1 Queen of Peace had a school with 149-139 students.
1980 1981 Our Lady of Sorrows Portland OR


In residence

Our Lady of Sorrows had a school with 249 students.
1981 1985 St. Henry's


• A woman went to the archdiocese in 1987 to complain about Jacobson's sexual advances toward women and high school aged girls. The woman worked at St. Henry's with Jacobson. Jacobson recruited all girls for a folk group and the woman reported observing Jacobson angrily demanding the girls sit next to him on the piano bench to the point where he was touching them, and that he was seen by others kissing one of the girls. (archdiocesan documents)

OR 2/3  


William Joseph Levada replaced Power as bishop (1986-1995)

1990 Christ the King


• Accused in 1987 of touching a 15 year old girl in an inappropriate way. The girl's mother reported his behavior to the archdiocese. He was an umpire for girls softball, and there was talk of his inappropriate behavior toward the girls. He was evaluated psychologically in April 1987. It was recommended that he not be involved in parish life, and that he receive lon-term, intensive therapy. (archdiocesan documents)

OR 3/3, 2/2 Christ the King had a school with 118-149 students.
1990 1991 St. Mary of the Valley Convent Beaverton OR Chaplain  
1991 1992 Our Lady of the Lake


• The woman who approached the archdiocese in 1987 with her concerns about Jacobson's behavior complained again in Dec. 1993 and in a March 1993 letter to Rev. Charles Lienert of current inappropriate attention by Jacobson toward a young woman. Lienert notified Levada, and said they must consider putting additional restrictions on Jacobson's ministry. (archdiocesan documents)



Temporary Administrator

Our Lady of the Lake had a school with 200 students and a CCD program with 645 students.
1992 1994 Absent on Sick Leave



Francis Eugene George followed Levada as bishop (1996-1997)

1997 Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Portland OR


In residence.

The Cathedral had a school with 200 students.


John George Vlazny became bishop after George (1997- )

2009 Retired Beaverton OR  

Living at St John Vianney Residence, which is an archdiocesan retirement facility for priests.

He was sued, along with the archdiocese, in 2002 for sexual abuse of a girl during his time at Queen of Peace Catholic School in Salem OR.

There was concern in March 2002 that Jacobson was becoming "too close" to a family at the parish where he was "helping out", St. Cecila's in Beaverton. The family had a fourth grade daughter whom the concerned person felt was vulnerable and at risk with Jacobson, given his history. (archdiocesan documents).

: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1966-2009).

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 Jacobson'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 Sept. 22, 2009