J. Bernard Hubbert, O.S.A.

1905 – 1988 (June 10)

John Bernard Hubbert was born on November 22, 1905 in Philadelphia, PA, to Edward Hubbert and Sarah Gray. He had one brother and two sisters. Baptized in the Church of Saint Joachim, his early education was at the Henry Lawton Public School followed by two years at Frankford High School. In 1923 he applied to the Augustinian Preparatory Seminary on Staten Island, New York, from which he graduated as a postulant in 1926. That August he began his novitiate and professed simple vows on August 16, 1927. Three years later, he professed solemn vows on August 15, 1930 at the collegiate seminary on the campus of Villanova College, Villanova, PA, from which he graduated with an A. B. Degree in philosophy in 1931. After theological studies at Augustinian College in Washington, DC, he was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop John McNamara on June 12, 1934 at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. During the summers Father Hubbert took a number of courses in both mathematics and science at Villanova, and following his theological studies he began, on a part-time basis, to work for a master’s degree in economics at The Catholic University of America. He received the degree in 1939. 

Father Hubbert’s first assignment, in September 1935, was to Augustinian Academy on Staten Island, where for the next 22 years he taught science and religion and held the positions, at various times, of rector of postulants and scholastics, principal of the school, and sup-prior of the community. He also taught chemistry at Manhattan College in New York City and was co-author of a high school textbook on biology. In 1957 Father Hubbert was transferred to Saint Thomas of Villanova Monastery on the Villanova campus, where he was a professor of physics. He also directed the graduate program for secondary school science teachers, became director of the National Science Foundation Program, and served as assistant to the Dean of Arts and Science. In the Augustinian Community, he served as sub-prior for 12 years. 

In 1987 Father Hubbert retired as a full-time teacher. He celebrated his golden jubilee of ordination in 1984. He was devoted to the Mother of God and actively promoted the rosary and Marian devotions as well as Right to Life Programs both on and off the campus. A precise and patient man, he excelled in his hobby of repairing watches. Until shortly before his death he remained in the monastery community. He died on June 10, 1988, at Haverford Community Hospital. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on June 14, 1988, at the Church of Saint Thomas of Villanova on the university campus. The prior provincial Joseph A. Duffey, O.S.A., was the celebrant and the homily was preached by former provincial James Sherman, O.S.A. Father Hubbert is buried in the Augustinian plot at Calvary Cemetery, West Conshohocken, PA.