July 2, 2018 // Local

Congregation of Holy Cross elects new provincial superior

NOTRE DAME — Father William M. Lies, CSC, was elected as the new provincial superior of the Congregation of Holy Cross, United States Province of Priests and Brothers, by the Provincial Chapter in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on June 14.

As provincial superior, Father Lies will oversee the work and welfare of more than 500 priests, brothers and seminarians in the U.S. Province. He succeeds Father Thomas J. O’Hara, CSC, who served as provincial superior for six years.

The U.S. Province carries out the vision of founder Blessed Basil Moreau to make God known, loved and served through higher education, parish and other ministries throughout the United States. In addition, the province has apostolates and missions in East Africa, Chile, Peru, Mexico and Bangladesh.

The Constitutions of the Congregation of Holy Cross give the provincial superior authority over all members and houses in the province. He is elected by at least two-thirds vote of the chapter and confirmed by the congregation’s superior general in Rome, Father Robert Epping, CSC. The term of the provincial superior is six years.

A native of Little Falls, Minnesota, Father Lies was born July 4, 1962, and is one of 10 children. He has a twin brother, Jim, who is also a Holy Cross priest. Father Lies earned his bachelor’s degree in English with minors in French and philosophy from Saint John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota. He entered the Congregation of Holy Cross on Aug. 15, 1988, professed first vows Aug. 12, 1989, received an M.Div. degree from the University of Notre Dame and took final vows Aug. 28, 1993. He was ordained to the priesthood April 9, 1994.

Father Lies received his doctoral degree in Latin American politics from the University of Pittsburgh. His research and teaching has focused on human rights, religion and politics in Latin America and the politics of poverty. He has given talks and lectures throughout the country and serves on a number of related domestic and international boards. In 2013, Father Lies received Catholic Charities U.S.A.’s “Keep the Dream Alive” award that honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Prior to his election, Father Lies was vice president for Mission Engagement and Church Affairs at the University of Notre Dame, a role he began in March 2012. He formerly served as executive director of the Center for Social Concerns (2002-12) at Notre Dame, and taught in the Department of Political Science. He is a fellow of both the Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and the Kellogg Institute for International Studies.

As vice president for Mission Engagement and Church Affairs, Father Lies assisted in deepening the conversation across the academy on issues of importance to the Church. He was also the liaison for Notre Dame to the Congregation of Holy Cross, the U.S. bishops, the USCCB and its affiliates and the Holy See, and he oversaw the Tantur Ecumenical Institute in Jerusalem.

Also appointed as assistants to the new provincial superior were Assistant Provincial Vicar Father Peter Jarret, CSC; Assistant Provincial and Secretary Father Neil Wack, CSC; and Steward Father Mark Thesing, CSC.

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