Accused Priest Denies Abuse Allegations

By Gary V. Murray
Telegram & Gazette
January 19, 2011

A former Barre priest accused in a pending civil lawsuit of sexually assaulting a young boy more than 25 years ago denies the allegations, according to his lawyer.

A man identified in public court records only as John Doe No. 801 filed suit Oct. 14 in Worcester Superior Court against the Rev. Ronald D. Provost and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester alleging he was sexually abused by the priest when he was between 8 and 11 years old. Also named as defendants in the suit are 10 unidentified individuals referred to as Michael Moe Nos. 1 through 10.

The plaintiff, who said he suffered severe emotional distress as a result of the alleged abuse, is seeking unspecified monetary damages.

Lawyer Louis P. Aloise said today that he and his law partner, Michael C. Wilcox, had been retained to represent Rev. Provost.

“He vehemently denies any involvement with this named plaintiff or any other with respect to any criminal physical touching of any kind and intends to defend himself vigorously,” Mr. Aloise said of Rev. Provost.

In 1993, Rev. Provost was convicted in Worcester Superior Court of soliciting a child to pose nude and received a suspended prison sentence with probation. He was found guilty of taking semi-nude photographs of a 10-year-old boy in 1992 in the locker room of a pool in Gardner.

Rev. Provost, who was pastor of St. Joseph's Church in Barre when the photographs were taken, was removed from any active ministry in the diocese when the picture-taking allegations surfaced.

A Worcester native, he had previously served at parishes in Northboro, Fitchburg, Worcester, Southbridge, Winchendon and Upton.



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