Former Holbrook Priest Suspended; the Rev. Rebeiro Faces Child Abuse Charge

By Elizabeth W. Crowley
Patriot Ledger (Quincy, MA)
August 12, 2002

BOSTON - The Boston Archdiocese has suspended a priest who once served at St. Joseph's Church in Holbrook because of an allegation that he sexually abused a child nearly 30 years ago.

The Rev. Anthony J. Rebeiro, chaplain at Quigley Memorial Hospital and Soldiers Home in Chelsea, has been removed from all assignments pending an investigation by the archdiocese. He will continue to get paid and receive medical benefits but will not be able to perform any public ministry in the church, archdiocese spokeswoman Donna M. Morrissey said in a statement released Saturday.

Morrissey said yesterday that she could not provide more details about the allegation against Rebeiro. The statement does not say whether the alleged victim is a man or woman or when the alleged abuse occurred.

The statement said the archdiocese is notifying civil authorities. It has also offered counseling to both Rebeiro and the person who leveled the accusation against him.

"If the allegation proves to be groundless, efforts will be made to restore the priest's reputation," Morrissey said in the statement.

Rebeiro is the 21st priest in the Boston Archdiocese suspended since January. Since at least 1992, he has been assigned to St. Anthony of Padua Church in Revere. In the 2002 archdiocese directory, he is also listed as chaplain at the Soldiers Home in Chelsea.

In April of 1987, Rebeiro began serving at St. Joseph's in Holbrook. He served there for at least a year.

Rebeiro is a native of Goa, which is off the coast of Bombay, India, and was ordained in 1956 at the Collegio di Propaganda Fide ministry at the Vatican where he was a student on scholarship. He entered Oxford University as a Rhodes scholar, graduating with honors in 1960 with a triple master's degree in philosophy, politics and economics. He served ministries in Italy and Paris before coming to the United States in 1965 to teach and tutor at various colleges including Boston College, Wellesley College and Salve Regina College in Newport, R.I.

He served two years at a parish in Woburn and was listed as a priest at St. Mary's Church in Franklin in 1983. He began serving at St. Joseph's in Holbrook in 1987. At St. Joseph's, Rebeiro was known as "Father Tony."


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