Assignment Record– Rev. William M. Walsh

Summary of Case: Walsh was accused twice of sexually abusing boys in his career as a priest, in 1980 and in 2001. He was cleared both times because the accusations were either "third hand" or anonymous. He was suspended from ministry in 2004 when a person alleged having been sexually abused as a child by Walsh. This may or may not have been a new allegation. Walsh remained unassigned in August 2010. His name was included on the Boston archdiocese's list released in August 2011 of clergy accused of abuse of minors He was laicized in 2011.

Born: 1945
: 1971
Laicized: 2011


Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Boston archbishop was Humberto Sousa Medeiros (1970-1983).

1980 Blessed Sacrament

Boston (Jamaica Plain)

Archdiocesan files released in Jan. 2004 showed that Walsh had been accused in 1980 of molesting a boy at this parish. The information was said to be "third hand". Walsh denied the allegation. The boy's mother told Bishop Daily that her son was not molested by Walsh. (Associated Press State & Local Wire
January 31, 2004)

MA 3/4, 2/3, 2/4 Parish had a school with 960-241 students, and a high school until 1978 with 167 girls.


Medeiros was followed as archbishop by Bernard Francis Law (1984-2002).

1987 St. Joseph's Boston (Hyde Park) MA 2/2  
1987 1997 St. Edward's


In 2001 the archdiocese received two letters stating that Walsh had sexually abused boys while assigned to St. Edward's. The letters were signed by "one of Father Bill's Golden Boys", who explained that one became a Golden Boy when "you have done sexually what he requires." (Associated Press State & Local Wire
January 31, 2004)

MA 2/2 Parish had a school with 238 students.


Sean Patrick O'Malley, O.F.M. Cap. replaced Law

2004 St. Mary of the Annunciation Danvers MA 2/3. 2/2

Parish had a school pre-K to 8th grade, as well as a religious education program.

2004 2011 Unassigned Boston MA  

Walsh was suspended from ministry in 2004 when a person came forward with allegations of having been sexually abused as a child by Walsh. It was unclear if these were new allegations. (Boston Herald
February 1, 2004)

Walsh was laicized in 2011. (Walsh Assignment Record, Archdiocese of Boston)

: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1972-2009 )

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 Walsh'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 November 5, 2015.