Assignment Record – Bishop Hubert Joseph Hart

Summary of Case: The Kansas City-St. Joseph Missouri diocese revealed in 2002 that retired Cheyenne Wyoming Bishop Hart, who had been a Kansas City-St. Joseph priest, was accused in 1989 and 1992 of having molested boys in Missouri in the 1970s. Another man came forward in 2002 with accusations that Hart molested him when he was 14-years-old and Hart was a Cheyenne Auxilliary Bishop. Hart denied the accusations. The diocese settled with at least five accusers in August 2008. Another lawsuit was filed in December 2011, accusing Hart of sexually abusing a Kansas City, MO boy in the mid-1970s.

Ordained: 1956

Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Kansas City-St. Joseph Bishop was John Patrick Cody (1956-1961), followed by Charles Herman Helmsing (1962-1977).

1962 Guardian Angels Kansas City MO

4/5, 3/3, 2/2

Parish had a school with 283-380 students.
1962 1966 Visitation of the Blessed Virgin

Kansas City

Hart is said to have molested boys as early as 1963.

MO 4/4, 4/5

Parish had a school with 670-640 students.

1963 1971 Ecclesiastical Notary Kansas City MO    
1964 1976 Vice-Chancellor Kansas City MO  


1966 1968 St. Therese Little Flower Kansas City MO


In residence.

Parish had a school with 534-514 students.
1968 1969 St. James' Kansas City MO


In residence.

Parish had a school with 248 students.
1969 1976 St. John Francis Regis

Kansas City

Accused of having sexually abused junior high school-aged boys in the early 1970s. The two accusations were made in 1989 and 1992, and revealed to the public in 2002.

In 2005, a fifth person alleged abuse by Hart in 1973 or 1974, when he was 12 year old St. John's parishioner.

Hart was accused in a Dec. 2011 lawsuit of sexually abusing a St. John's student in the mid-1970s. The accuser claimed that Hart and Msgr. Thomas O'Brien offered him marijuana, alcohol and pornography, and sexually abused him.

MO 1/3, 1/2

Parish had a school with 375-416 students.














O'Brien has been accused of sexually abusing boys in dozens of lawsuits.


Cheyenne diocese bishop was Hubert Michael Newell (1951-1978).

1978 Auxilliary Bishop


In 2002 a man accused Hart of sexually abusing him in 1977 when he was 14 and Hart was Auxilliary Bishop of Cheyenne.

1976 1978 Vicar General   WY    
1976 1978 Officialis   WY    
1976 1978 St. Patrick's Casper WY 1/2  
    St. Francis Midwest WY   St. Francis was a mission of St. Patrick's in Casper.


Hart was Cheyenne bishop 1978-2001.

2001 Bishop Cheyenne WY  

Named bishop of Cheyenne June 12, 1978. Retired Sept. 26, 2001


2001 2012 Retired      

Named in lawsuit in 2004. A man filed suit in 2005 accusing Hart of abusing him in 1973 or 1974, when the man was 12 yrs. old.

Diocese settled claims in 2008. Hart denied the accusations.

A sixth lawsuit in Dec. 2011 brought new allegations against Hart, that he'd molested a Kansas City, MO boy in the mid-1970s.

Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: Kenedy & Sons, 1957-2008).

Hart: Sexual Charges Not True, By Jessica Lowell, Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, April 25, 2002
KC Diocese Spent Thousands after Two Allegations Recently Retired Wyoming Bishop Denies Accusations, By Judy L. Thomas and Matt Stearns, Kansas City Star, April 25, 2002
Ricken Letter to Parishioners, Associated Press, April 26, 2002
Hart Faces More Allegations, By Scott Canon, Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, May 15, 2002
New Allegations Surface against Retired Bishop, By Scott Canon, Kansas City Star, May 15, 2002
Wyoming Residents Support Bishop but Kansas City Family Claims Hart Sexually Molested Boy during 1971 Trip, By Howard Pankratz, Coleman Cornelius, and Virginia Culver, Denver Post Staff Writers, Denver Post, May 16, 2002
Hart Cleared of Sex Abuse, By Kelly Milner, Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, July 30, 2002
Former KC Priest Cleared of Sex Abuse Allegations, By Matt Stearns, Kansas City Star, July 31, 2002
Lawsuit Accuses Three Priests of Sexual Abuse, By Kevin Murphy and Judy Thomas, Kansas City Star, January 22, 2004
More Accusations against Priests, By Dan Curry, The Examiner [Missouri] , January 22, 2004
Former Wyo Bishop Sued for Sex Abuse, By Tom Morton , Casper Star-Tribune [Cheyenne WO] , January 24, 2004
Wyoming Bishop, Missouri Priests Named in Abuse Suit, By Dennis Coday, National Catholic Reporter, February 6, 2004
Clerical Abuse in US Compounded by Crimes and Cover-ups, By Ryle Dwyer, Irish Examiner [United States], Downloaded March 3, 2004
Center Will Keep Bishop's Name, By Robert W. Black , Star-Tribune [Cheyenne WY] , August 28, 2005
Fifth Man Sues Retired Bishop for Sex Abuse
Victims' Group Wants Name Removed from Wing of Children's Home, By Dennis Coday, National Catholic Reporter,
September 16, 2005
Catholic Scouters and Sexual Abuse Website, Nov. 30, 2007 list of U.S. bishops accused of abuse, April 14, 2008
The Priests Involved, Kansas City Star, August 20, 2008
Tentative Settlement Reached in Kc Priest Abuse Cases, By Mark Morris, Kansas City Star, August 20, 2008
Kansas City, Mo. — a Roman Catholic Diocese Has Tentatively Agreed to Pay $10 Million to Settle 47 Pending Sexual Abuse Claims against the Diocese and 12 of Its Priests, Including Former Wyoming Bishop Joseph Hart, Casper Star-Tribune, August 21, 2008
More Lawsuits Filed against Priests with Kansas City Ties, By Judy L. Thomas, Kansas City Star, December 26, 2011

Priests in a Parish: We use the following convention to show a priest's place among the clergy of a parish: 1/2 means that he is the first priest listed in the Official Catholic Directory (usually the pastor) and that there is a total of two priests at the parish. The shorthand 3/4 means that the priest is listed third on a four-priest roster. See our sample page from the Directory.

Note: The Official Catholic Directory aims to report the whereabouts of Catholic priests in the United States on January 1 of the Directory's publication year. Our working assumption is that a priest listed in the Directory for a given year was at the same assignment for part of the previous year as well. However, Kenedy & Sons will sometimes accept updates well into the year of publication. Diocesan clergy records are rarely available to correct this information. The Directory is also sometimes misleading or wrong. We have tried to create an accurate assignment record, given the source materials and their limitations. Assignment records are a work in progress and we are always improving the records that we post. Please email us with new information and corrections.

This assignment record was last updated on March 16, 2012


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