Rev. Stephen B. Perzan—Assignment Record

Summary of Case: The archdiocese received two allegations of abuse by Perzan in Philadelphia at St. Gabriel's Hall for delinquent boys: one allegation in 2004 about abuse in 1991, and another allegation in 2005 about abuse in 1994-1995. The first alleged abuse in Philadelphia occurred during a time when Perzan is not indexed in the Official Catholic Directory, and the second alleged abuse in Philadelphia occurred when he was listed in the Directory as assigned to a parish in New Mexico. What's more, the report refers to a 1998 letter from a pastor, complaining about Perzan's behavior with children. The Directory does not list Perzan at the parish in question, but at a different parish. At the beginning of his career, Perzan had three one-year parish assignments, and his move to New Mexico coincides with a slight change in the Directory's spelling of his name. In 2003, with the first grand jury in session, Perzan started a two-year parish assignment in Puerto Rico. This is an extremely unusual Directory record and would be consistent with problems earlier and more numerous than those chronicled in the 2011 grand jury report. Yet the review board deemed the two known allegations unsubstantiated, and Perzan is still in ministry as of 2/12/11.

: 1973
Incardinated: Philadelphia PA, Gallup, and Arecibo PR


Start Stop Parish Town State Position Notes
1973 1974 St. Stanislaus Lansdale PA 4/6, including two in residence. Philadelphia archdiocese. Parish school had 783 pupils in 1973-1974.
1974 1975 St. Pius X Broomall PA 3/4, including one in residence. Philadelphia archdiocese. Parish school had 564 pupils in 1974-1975.
1975 1980 St. Elizabeth's Philadelphia PA 3/3. The pastor, Msgr. Philip J. Dowling, admitted in 2005 to abusing 2 sisters in the 1960s. Philadelphia archdiocese. Parish school had 619 pupils in 1975-1976. The parish also provided Community Services, staffed by five nuns.
1980 1985 St. Benedict's Philadelphia PA 2/3, 2/2. Philadelphia archdiocese. Parish school had 330 pupils in 1980-1981.


St. Rose of Lima Philadelphia PA 2/2. Philadelphia archdiocese. Parish school had 299 pupils in 1985-1986.
1987 1989 St. Charles Borromeo Philadelphia PA 3/3. Priests were Revs, John Van de Paer CICM, Joseph Bukasa CICM, and (in res.) Perzan. Philadelphia archdiocese. In 1987-1988, the parish elementary school had 320 students; St. Charles Preschool had 81 students.
1989 1994 Whereabouts unknown But the 2011 Philadelphia Grand Jury Report (pp. 61-63) states that in 2004, the archdiocese received an allegation that Perzan forced a boy at St. Gabriel's Hall to perform sex acts in 1991. It appears that Perzan lived at St. Gabriel's.   In 2005, the archdiocese received an allegation that another boy had been sexually abused by Perzan in 1993-1994. Perzan is not indexed in the 1990-1994 Directories. Perzan is not listed at St. Gabriel's Hall or at De La Salle-in-Towne or De La Salle Vocational, which were run by Brothers of the Christian Schools (FSC).
1994 1998 St. Francis of Assisi Lumberton NM 1/1. Gallup diocese. In the 1995-1997 Directories, Perzan is indexed both as a Philadelphia priest on duty outside the diocese, and as a Gallup priest. But in the Gallup pages, he is identified as (PH). In the Gallup index and pages, his first name is spelled Stephan. In the 1998 Directory, Perzan is indexed only as a Gallup priest, but in the Gallup pages, he is still identified as (PH).
1994 1998 St. Anthony's Dulce NM 1/1. Gallup diocese. A mission of St. Francis.
      But in the 2011 Philadelphia Grand Jury Report, Perzan is said to be assigned to St. Hugh of Cluny parish in Philadelphia in 1998. He is not listed at St. Hugh's in the 1997-1999 Directories.   The report states that in 1998 the pastor (listed as Rev. Dennis M. Mooney in the Directory) wrote a letter to Msgr. Lynn complained about Perzan allowing young children and street people in the rectory, and hearing long confessions from young childre. The pastor thought Perzan's behavior might reflect deeper problems.  
1998 2002

Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Philadelphia PA 3/3. Philadelphia archdiocese. In 1998-1999, the parish school had 426 students; CCD classes had 160 students. He is indexed and listed as Stephan B. Perzan in the 1999-2002 Directories.
2002 2004 Our Lady of Mount Carmel Barceloneta Puerto Rico 2/2. Priests were Revs. Augusto Concha and "Steve Perzan" On duty outside the diocese in the Arecibo diocese. The spelling is corrected in the 2003 Directory to read "Stephen B. Perzan". In the 2004 Directory, he is double indexed and listed as PH (On Duty Outside the Diocese) and ARE (i.e., Arecibo)
2002 2004 Our Lady of Fatima Garrochales Puerto Rico   Arecibo diocese. Chapel of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
2002 2004 St. Anthony's Palmas Altas Puerto Rico   Arecibo diocese. Chapel of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
2002 2004 Our Lady of the Sea Punta Palma Puerto Rico   Arecibo diocese. Chapel of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
2004 2010 St. Helena's Philadelphia PA 1/3, including (in res.) Rev. Francis M. Gallagher (Peoria). Then in 2006, 1/2; 1/3. On the parish website, as of 2/12/11, Msgr. is listed as Pastor, Vietnamese Community, and Perzan is listed as an associate. Philadelphia archdiocese. In 2004-2005, parish school had 335 students; CCD classes had 47 students.


Source: Official Catholic Directory (New York: Kenedy & Sons, 1974-2010.)

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 Perzan's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations reported in the 2011 Philadelphia Grand Jury Report. 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 2/12/11.