retired & loving it

By Diogenes (articles ) | Jan 22, 2004

The Kansas City Star is reporting that three priests, including one who later became the Bishop of Cheyenne, Wyoming, and has since retired, have been accused of getting in touch with somebody else's inner child:

Hart, 72, is accused of sexual improprieties at parishes in Kansas City and of providing alcohol to minors. The lawsuit said Hart took Kevin Hunter on an extended trip to the western United States, during which they had sex.

The lawsuit also said Hart brought boys from Wyoming back to Kansas City while he was a bishop and engaged in improper activity, such as making one of the plaintiffs repeatedly change into swimming suits while he watched.

Hart had denied earlier abuse allegations reported in Kansas City StarApril 2002. The report revealed that the diocese had spent thousands of dollars on two families in the 1990s for counseling and a new pickup after they accused Hart of sexual abuse.

Hart is one of the notorious "boy bishops" appointed during the impressively destructive nunciature of Jean Jadot. He wasn't yet 45 when he was named in 1976. The Holy See accepted Hart's resignation in 2001, five years before he was due to retire, under the rubric of Canon 401, para 2: ("A diocesan Bishop who, because of illness or some other grave reason, has become unsuited for the fulfilment of his office, is earnestly requested to offer his resignation from office"). It is, of course, erroneous to deduce from the fact that a bishop was yanked under 401.2 that he is guilty of sexual misconduct.

And besides, can't a diocese buy a person a new pick-up because, I don't know, they see the upholstery is shot in the old one?

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  • Posted by: Elan - Jan. 24, 2004 12:16 AM ET USA

    We are too quick to pronounce sentence on the clergy. They have a right to due process before we trash them. Should they prove guilty, our Lord's words regarding the Pharisees should strike fear in our hearts. "The scribes and the Pharisees sit on the chair of Moses; so practice and observe whatever they tell you, but not what they do..." Mt 23:2,3 This is no practice run. Each of us will have to give account for every wound we inflict upon the Body of Christ.

  • Posted by: - Jan. 23, 2004 6:32 PM ET USA

    "Hart is one of the notorious "boy bishops" appointed during the impressively destructive nunciature of Jean Jadot." My Bishop was appointed by Jean Jadot too and I consider him to be one of the best Bishops the Church has. Just a thought..... I wonder who appointed Cardinal Law? Also, didn't Jesus appoint men who betrayed and denied him???