Rev. James W. Pommier

Summary of Case: Pommier's personnel file showed numerous allegations in the 1960s and 1970s. He left the Bismarck diocese in 1977 without the bishop's permission. He worked in Seattle until 1985, when his faculties were removed by the archbishop. The Bismarck bishop removed his faculties in 1990. Pommier may have later worked in MT. The diocese announced in March 2008 that the Vatican had laicized Pommier for "ecclesiastical crimes against youth." He lived in WA until his death in January 2012. There have been at least four settlements. Pommier's name was included on the Seattle archdiocese's list in January 2016. Included on the Bismarck diocese's list of those with substantiated allegations in January 2020.

Ordained: 1954
Died: January 28, 2012

Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Bismarck bishop was Lambert Anthony Hoch (1952-1956)

1955 St. Patrick's Dickinson ND


Parish had a school with 309 students.


Hilary Baumann Hacker replaced Hoch as bishop (1956-1982)

1957 St. Vincent dePaul Mott ND 1/2

Parish had a school with 182-187 students.

1957 1961 St. John the Baptist New Leipzig ND 1/1  
1957 1961 Mary Immaculate Miner ND  

This was a mission of St. John the Baptist in New Leipzig.

1957 1961 Sacred Heart of Jesus Bently ND   This was a mission of St. John the Baptist in New Leipzig.
1961 1962 Immaculate Conception


Accused anonymously by three boys in 1962. (Bismarck Tribune
March 28, 2008)

ND 1/1  
1961 1962 Holy Ghost Butte ND   This was a mission of Immaculate Conception in Max.
1962 1963 SS. Peter and Paul Fallon ND 1/1 Parish had a school with 58 students.
1963   Sacred Heart Scranton ND   This assignment is per a news article.
1963 1970? St. Theresa of the Child Jesus


Accused in 1964 as well as in 1968 or 1969.
(Bismarck Tribune
March 28, 2008)


ND 1/1 In the 1967, 1968, 1969, and 1970 Directories Pommier is not indexed, but is listed in the Bismarck diocesean pages as at this parish.
    St. Boniface Grenora ND Pastor This assignment per a news article.
1970 1978 St. Joseph's Hospital


Accused in 1971 as well as in 1972 or 1974, and in 1977. Most of those reporting having been abused by Pommier were early to mid-teens at the time of the abuse, and one was as young as ten. (Bismarck Tribune
March 28, 2008)

ND Resident Chaplain

The 1978 Directory is the last in which Pommier appears.

Per news accounts, Pommier left the Bismarck diocese in 1977 and moved to Washington state. He did not inform the Bismarck bishop, nor did he ask permission. Seattle archbishop Hunthausen removed his priestly faculties in 1985, as did Bismarck bishop John Francis Kinney in 1990. He may have gone to the Great Falls and Billings Montana areas, where he represented himself as a priest.

Pommier was laicized in 2008. He died January 28, 2012. (Minot Daily News, February 4, 2012)

Source: Official Catholic Directory (New York: Kenedy & Sons, 1955-1981).

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.


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