Born Robert Curran on December 21, 1907 in Walpole, Massachusetts, he attended public schools and in September 1923 entered Holy Cross Seminary, Dunkirk where he spent three years. He proceeded on to the Passionist novitiate, West Springfield, Massachusetts and professed his vows on August 15, 1927. He received the name Urban. Studies continued at Passionist monasteries in Brighton, Massachusetts; Union City, New Jersey; and Baltimore, Maryland. He was ordained on June 15, 1933 by Archbishop Michael Curley with fifteen classmates in the Cathedral of the Assumption. Sacred Eloquence followed under Father Stanislaus Grennan, C.P.
For many years he preached parish missions, novenas, and retreats in the eastern part of the United States. He also assisted in a great many parishes in the Brooklyn Diocese. He celebrated his fiftieth anniversary of ordination at Jamaica, New York. During the last part of his life he resided with the Shrewsbury, Massachusetts community and lived in the Nursing Home across the street.