November 14, 2009 // Uncategorized

Pope names archbishop for Milwaukee, bishop for Fort Wayne-South Bend

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop Jerome E. Listecki of La Crosse, Wis., to be the archbishop of Milwaukee and Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of Harrisburg, Pa., to be the bishop of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Ind.

He also accepted the resignation of Bishop John M. D’Arcy, who has headed the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend since 1985. He is 77 years old, two years past the age at which canon law requires bishops to turn in their resignation.

The appointments and resignation were announced in Washington Nov. 14 by Archbishop Pietro Sambi, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

In Milwaukee Archbishop Listecki, 60, succeeds Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan, who was appointed to head the New York Archdiocese in February.

Bishop Rhoades, who will turn 52 Nov. 26, succeeds Bishop D’Arcy, who earlier this year was at the forefront of strong criticism of the University of Notre Dame in South Bend for inviting President Barack Obama to give the commencement address and its decision to give him an honorary degree.

More than 70 bishops and other critics of Obama said his support of legal abortion and embryonic stem-cell research made him an inappropriate choice to be commencement speaker at a Catholic university and to receive an honorary degree.

Later in the year, in an article in America magazine, Bishop D’Arcy said the controversy was not about Obama, a replay of the 2008 elections or “whether it is appropriate for the president of the United States to speak at Notre Dame or any great Catholic university on the pressing issues of the day.”

“This is what universities do,” he said. “No bishop should try to prevent that.”

The central question, Bishop D’Arcy said, is: “Does a Catholic university have the responsibility to give witness to the Catholic faith and to the consequences of that faith by its actions and decisions — especially by a decision to confer its highest honor?”

Bishop D’Arcy said that, in his 24 years as head of the diocese in which Notre Dame is located, “I have never interfered in the internal governance of Notre Dame or any other institution of higher learning within the diocese.”

But he said a bishop “must be concerned that Catholic institutions do not succumb to the secular culture, making decisions that appear to many, including ordinary Catholics, as a surrender to a culture opposed to the truth about life and love.”

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