Rev. James W. Thompson

Summary of Case: Thompson was accused in two separate lawsuits in 2003 of having sexually abused boys in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He started his career as a Resurrectionist, later leaving the order to become a diocesan priest. He retired in 1988 and died in 2006.

: 1944


Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Louisville archbishop was John Alexander Floersh (1924-1967)



Thompson is not indexed in the 1945 Directory.
1945 1947 Saint Cecilia's Louisville KY 5/5

Parish had a school with 762-786 students.

Referred to as Rev. James W. Thompson, c.r.

1947 1949 St. Mary's College

St. Mary


KY   This was a minor seminary of the Ressurectionist Fathers, "exclusively for ecclesiastical students".
1949 1951 St. Cecilia's Louisville KY 3/4, 4/5 Parish had a school with 760-770 students.


Replacing Floersh as archbishop was Thomas John McDonough (1967-1981)

1970 St. Mary's College

St. Mary

• Thompson was accused in a 2003 lawsuit of having sexually abused a St Mary's High School student in 1971, on trips to Florida and the Bahamas between the boy's freshman and sophomore years. The lawsuit accused Thompson of a pattern of sexual abuse of children in the late 1960s and 1970s, and that the archdiocese was aware of it, but did nothing. (Associated Press State & Local Wire
April 1, 2003)

KY Superior; Rector and Superior; Rector Thompson is referred to as "Very Rev." beginning in the 1965 Directory.
1970 1972 Holy Spirit Louisville KY 2/3

Parish had a school with 418-383 students.

Thompson appears to have left the Resurrectionists, as there is no longer a c.r. after his name.


Thomas Cajetan Kelly, O.P. succeeded

1987 St. Ignatius


A second man accused Thompson in an April 2003 lawsuit of having sexually abused him when he was a minor in the 1970s, during trips to places like Kings Island amusement park in Ohio. [Courier-Journal] Louisville, KY)
April 5, 2003)

KY 1/2, 1/3  
1987 2006 Retired Louisville     Thompson became a nursing home resident in 2003, and died Feb. 1, 2006

: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1946-2007)

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 and 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 collates Thompson's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations as reported in the media. We make no representation regarding the truth of the allegation we report, and we remind our readers that the U.S. legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty. Similarly, individuals who may be defendants in civil actions are presumed not to be liable for such claims unless a plaintiff proves otherwise. Admissions of guilt or liability are not typically a part of civil or private settlements. For more information, see our posting policy.

This assignment record was last updated on Jan. 23, 2010