More information on Father Gibson’s Assignments

The following is a little more detail on the assignments of Father Robert J. Gibson,  ordained in the Diocese of Scranton in 1958.  The number of parishes he was assigned to that had schools, either in the parish or asscociated with a parish, is alarming. For the record, I have not received any of this information from the Diocese of Scranton. They seem to still be deciding the question of what information should be released on Father Gibson’s assignments. Special thanks to Janet in Kansas for the research she so graciously forwarded to me. (note: The Official Catholic Directory is a snapshot of where priests were assigned as of 1 January of each year. )

1959-65 Scranton, PA St. Paul, 1510 Penn Ave. Priests: John J. Vaughan(Vicar Forane, Dean), Joseph F. Ryan, Joseph R. Doggett(’59), Francis A. Conlan(’60-62), Robert J. Gibson

School: 7 Sisters of the I.H.M. 1 lay teacher 484 pupils High school: 10 Sisters of the I.H.M. 280 pupils
Mission: St. Clare’s School: Sisters of the I.H.M. 7 Lay teacher 1 2215 Washington Ave. 401 pupils.
1966-67 directory not available (

1968-1970 Stroudsburg, PA St. Matthew’s, 200 Brodhead Ave. Priests: Thomas J. Cawley,Robert J. Gibson, John J. Bendik

St Matthews School: 7 Sisters I.H.M. 2 lay teachers 311 pupils Missions: St. Luke’s, Stroudsburg; St. John’s, Bushkill; St. Mark’s, Delaware Water Gap

1971-1974 Stroudsburg, PA St. Luke’s, 906 Main St. Priests: Francis G. Barrett, Robert J. Gibson In residence: John J. Bendik Mission: St. Mark’s, Delaware Water Gap.

St Matthews School, East Stroudsburg, Notre Dame Junior/Senior High School.

1975-82 Brodheadsville, PA Our Lady Queen of Peace Church Priest: Robert J. Gibson
Mission: Jonas, Holy Family. 

School:  Still associated with St. Matthew’s and Notre Dame

1983 Conyngham, PA St. John Bosco Priest: Robert J. Gibson

1984-95 Canadensis, PA St. Bernadette Church Priest: Robert J. Gibson
Mission: Promised Land, Our Lady of Fatima

1996 -1997 Kingston, PA St. Ignatius, 339 N. Maple Ave. Priests: F. Allan Conlan, Glenn E. McGreary, Joseph B. Wilson In res., Robert J. Gibson Chapel—St. Ann’s

1998-2008 Unassigned or leave of absence.  In the case of Fr. Gibson, he was sequestered in the Vianney Renewal Center in Dittmer, Missouri.

During his career he had ample opportunity to “groom” his victims. The diocese claims that there are 4 complaints on record from his time at St Lukes, Our Lady Queen of Peace, St. Bernadettes and finally at St Ignatius. It is interesting that Fr. Gibson was at St John Bosco in Coyningham for a period of only 6 months (September 1982 – February 1983). This is a remarkably short time frame for a pastor to be assigned to a parish! I can only speculate why the Diocese of Scranton would move a pastor after such a short tenure.

Father Robert Gibson’s Parish Assignments

For years I have been trying to figure out how Father Gibson flew under the radar. I was amazed that he was not listed on one of the websites that identify and chronicle these predators, such as BishopAccountability or SNAP.   He had to have the support and cover afforded by the Diocese to keep him from prosecution and to keep his actions from becoming public knowledge.  The Diocese, even though they knew he was a predator, returned him to a rectory, albeit not in a pastoral position, and he went back to his old ways.  Given the history the Diocese has with predator priests (16 that we know of), why did they keep returning these men to rectories?

The Diocese of Scranton’s current policy is to occasionally run general notices in church bulletins and the Catholic press.  These bulletin and press notices do not specifically state that Robert Gibson or any other priest by name,  may have been involved in inappropriate activity with children in the parishes in which he was assigned.

I have asked the Victims Advocate at the Diocese of Scranton to provide me with a complete listing of Fr. Gibson’s assignments since while in training and since his ordination in 1958.  I will pass along those details when they are available.

For now, from what I can piece together, he was assigned to the following parishes:

  • St. Matthew’s. East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania (1960’s)
  • St. Luke’s, Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania (early 1970’s)
  • Our Lady Queen of Peace, Brodheadsville Pennsylvania (mid/late 1970’s – 1980’s)
  • St. Bernadette’s, Canadensis, Pennsylvania (1980’s -1990’s)
  • St Ignatius Rectory, Kingston, Pennsylvania (mid 1990’s)

While at St. Matthews, St. Lukes and Our Lady Queen of Peace he was affiliated with St. Matthews Elementary School and Notre Dame Junior/Senior High School, both located in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania.

It was in these parishes and schools where he cultivated his targets.  I think one only needs to look in these locations to find other victims. I am certain they are there.  Can someone tell me why the Diocese of Scranton is not going to these parishes to discuss this issue?