The Dispatch: More from CWR...

Pope Francis appoints San Diego auxiliary to lead Phoenix diocese

Hannah Brockhaus By Hannah Brockhaus for CNA

San Diego Auxiliary Bishop John P. Dolan participates in a candlelight prayer vigil Dec. 8, 2019, held to oppose the Trump administration's plan to reinstate the federal death penalty. (CNS photo/David Maung)

Vatican City, Jun 10, 2022 / 04:16 am (CNA).

Pope Francis on Friday named San Diego Auxiliary Bishop John P. Dolan to lead the Catholic Diocese of Phoenix, Arizona.

Dolan, 60, succeeds Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted, whose resignation was accepted on June 10, after turning 75, the usual age of retirement for bishops.

Phoenix is the fifth-largest city in the U.S. and the diocese serves 1.2 million Catholics.

Dolan, a strong Spanish-speaker, has been an auxiliary bishop in San Diego, a diocese of almost 1.4 million Catholics, since 2017, serving under Cardinal-designate Robert McElroy.

Dolan grew up in the Clairemont neighborhood of San Diego as one of nine children. He was ordained a priest of the diocese in 1989. He was a parish priest for 27 years before he was appointed as auxiliary bishop.

He has served as vicar general and moderator of the curia. As vicar for clergy, he also assisted McElroy in the assignment of priests in San Diego’s 98 parishes.

The Phoenix bishop-elect was also known in San Diego for his support of refugees, in particular the Lost Boys of Sudan, a group of more than 20,000 boys from the Nuer and Dinka ethnic groups who were orphaned or left home during the Second Sudanese Civil War.

After his appointment as an auxiliary bishop in 2017, Dolan was hailed as an “LGBT-positive priest” by New Ways Ministry, a Catholic LGBT outreach group without approval or recognition from the Catholic Church.

Dolan was the pastor of St. John the Evangelist parish in the Hillcrest neighborhood, which, according to New Ways Ministry, is “where many of San Diego’s LGBT residents live.”

Dolan described his time at the parish as “an eye-opening experience, but also a joyful experience.”

In January 2021, he was one of 14 US bishops who signed a statement on protecting LGBT youth from bullying, called “God is on your side.”

If you value the news and views Catholic World Report provides, please consider donating to support our efforts. Your contribution will help us continue to make CWR available to all readers worldwide for free, without a subscription. Thank you for your generosity!

Click here for more information on donating to CWR. Click here to sign up for our newsletter.

About Catholic News Agency 9055 Articles
Catholic News Agency (


  1. I live in Phoenix.

    Goodbye to Bishop Olmsted. Godspeed in all.

    God help us with Dolan. Very familiar with his ‘outreach’ to active homosexuals and his disdain for the Catholic doctrine on morality.

    This “George Soros” progressive papacy rides on.

      • How does Soros and the progressive papacy define ‘Catholic in name only’? Does Francis define the set of ‘Catholic’? Fratelli Tutti teaches that we are all brothers and sisters. Why do you draw religious distinctions if God wills them all, according to Francis?

        • Francis teaches falsely. We are not all brothers and sisters. Our brothers and sisters are our fellow Christians. Catholics used to know this, but have been progressively dumbed down in recent decades, and no longer grasp basic Christian doctrine.

          • I know, as do you and most other orthodox Catholics, that Francis’s teaching in Fratelli Tutti is not the way to global harmony, yet some like Flowerday and Soros support Francis’ claim. Francis and Soros both tend to sugar-coated, fruit-flavored brotherhood as what the world needs now: A great big tutti-frutti-flavored kiss, everyone to every other.

            Francis and Flower use distinctions of religion when useful to distort, insult, or rationalize.

            The Pope is CATHOLIC while Soros is JEWISH. Nothing in common there. Not even sugar-coated fruit. See how different they are?? Nothing to see.

            Then Flowerday levels a ‘stupid-you type’ accusation against Ramjet and tells me I’ve missed a joke. Stupid Ram! Stupid me! Smart Flower!

            To Flowerday: ?Over-thought? You ain’t seen the start.

      • Soros finances the anti-Christian secular agenda, of which Francis has had many episodes of willful cooperation, or haven’t you troubled yourself to care? By the way, Soros is an atheist.

  2. Olmsted, rock solid, was retired as soon as he resigned. The new bishop is McElroy groomed. Tradition in Phoenix will soon come under attack. Bet on it.

    • Yep. Bp. Olmstead here, Abp. Chaput a couple of years ago…Francis accepted their mandatory resignations before the letters had fluttered to the desktop. Outa the way, faithful bishops. There’s revolutionizing to be done!

  3. Don’t miss the forest because of the trees. You know the general point that Ramjet is making. Don’t defend the indefensible.


    A. Death penalty for murderers, even repeat offenders: “We have “progressed” to see now that this is “not admissible.” (Jez-Colonizers in Vatican City wrote that buzz for our “NEW-CAT.”)

    Death penalty for the unborn…well yeah…Nancy said so.

    Viva la revolution!

    And remember, if you know what’s good for you, just pretend reality isn’t happening.

  5. My meeting with Archbishop Olmsted when he visited my mission parish in the Gallup NM diocese as coadjutor was a happy experience. He was quite friendly, interested in the Jicarilla Apache mission, knowledgeable, steadfast in his faith. Later at a clergy convocation in Albuquerque we met again and had a welcome conversation on practice of the faith. Needless to say the Phoenix diocese is losing a very fine pastor.
    I’m not at all pleased with his replacement, who seems more interested in protecting the rights of the deviant than practice of the faith. Bishop John Dolan’s appointment akin to Bishop McElroy’s elevation to the cardinalate reveals with little ambiguity the direction Pope Francis intends to take the Church. Humility and obedience are one thing, adherence to a misdirected effort is another.

1 Trackback / Pingback

  1. Pope Francis appoints San Diego auxiliary to lead Phoenix diocese – Catholic World Report | EUROP INFO

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

All comments posted at Catholic World Report are moderated. While vigorous debate is welcome and encouraged, please note that in the interest of maintaining a civilized and helpful level of discussion, comments containing obscene language or personal attacks—or those that are deemed by the editors to be needlessly combative or inflammatory—will not be published. Thank you.