Townsend Priest Assigned to Billerica Parish

By Evan Lips
Nashoba Publishing
October 27, 2011

Less than three weeks after the abrupt resignation of the Rev. Eugene Tully, the St. Theresa of Lisieux Parish will now be led by the Rev. Shawn Allen, who spent the past six and a half years as pastor at St. John's Parish in Townsend.

According to a St. Theresa news bulletin dated Oct. 23, Allen has asked Tully to celebrate a future Sunday 10 a.m. Mass to bless the parish's new front doors.

On Oct. 8, the Archdiocese of Boston ordered Tully to be reassigned to another church. That move came amid charges that Tully knowingly allowed a volunteer accused of sexually abusing a minor in the 1970s to travel with a church youth group last year. That volunteer, Renald "Ron" Hallee, 66, of Billerica, a former priest, is facing a lawsuit in another state filed by a woman who claims she was molested by him about 30 years ago when she was a minor.

On Oct. 9, the Rev. John McCormick, St. Theresa's senior priest in residence, began serving as a temporary administrator.

In St. John the Evangelist's Oct. 23 news bulletin, Allen described St. Theresa as a "grace filled community that strives to live the gospel of Jesus Christ."


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