Today the Vatican announced that Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Leonard P. Blair the new archbishop of Hartford, Connecticut. Bishop Blair, 64, has served as bishop of Toledo, Ohio since 2003, and will succeed Archbishop Henry Mansell, who, at 76, is already past the required retirement age of 75.
From Catholic News Agency:
Born in Detroit in 1949, Bishop Blair was ordained to the priesthood in 1976 following the completion of his studies at the Sacred Heart Seminary in Detroit, as well as both the North American College and the Gregorian University in Rome.
He holds numerous degrees, including a Bachelor’s degree in History, a Bachelor of Sacred Theology, a Licentiate in Theology with a specialization in Patristics and the History of Theology, as well as Doctorate in Theology.
In 2003, Bishop Blair was appointed by Bl. Pope John Paul II to lead the diocese of Toledo, Ohio, and has held the position for the last 10 years until his Oct. 29 appointment to Hartford.
Previous assignments of the bishop include his positions as ecumenical officer for the Archdiocese of Detroit, dean of studies and assistant professor of Theology at the Sacred Heart Major Seminary College, and service in the Papal Secretariat of State Office in Vatican City. …
“We welcome Archbishop-designate Blair with respect and appreciation for the distinguished record he has already accomplished,” Archbishop Mansell said in his statement, adding that the new leader will receive a warm reception from “the clergy, religious, and laypeople of the Archdiocese.”
Bishop Blair has been a major player in the on-going drama between the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious; in 2008 he was made the Vatican’s delegate for the doctrinal assessment of the LCWR, and his reports and observations on the group’s activities and publications were the basis for the CDF’s official Doctrinal Assessment document, which was released in April 2012. Since then Blair—along with Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois—has assisted Seattle Archbishop J. Peter Sartain in renewal efforts for the LCWR, as called for by the CDF.
Blair will be officially installed as the new archbishop of Hartford on December 16.
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