Fr. Pius Brazauskas died in 1990. He has been named in a sex abuse lawsuit filed by three men. (Sentinel archives)
Fr. Pius Brazauskas died in 1990. He has been named in a sex abuse lawsuit filed by three men. (Sentinel archives)

Three men have sued the Archdiocese of Portland, saying they were sexually abused by a priest from North Bend in the 1970s and 80s. The $29 million lawsuit names Father Pius Brazauskas, who died in 1990 at age 84.

The plaintiffs have filed under fictitious names and say the trauma from the abuse has only recently become clear to them.

A Cold War refugee from Lithuania and an artist, Father Brazauskas was ordained in 1930 at age 25. He came to Oregon in 1952 to serve as a chaplain at Sacred Heart Hospital in Eugene, where he stayed for 20 years. In a 1960 Catholic Sentinel article, Father Brazauskas said he painted to express the sorrow of being driven from his homeland by the Soviets.

Starting in 1971, he was chaplain at St. Catherine Nursing Home in North Bend. He retired in 1980. 

The suit seeks $9 million in compensatory damages and $20 million in punitive damages.