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22 US bishops could retire for age reasons in 2012

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placeholder January 9, 2012   •   VOL. 50, NO. 1   •   Oakland, CA
22 US bishops could retire
for age reasons in 2012

WASHINGTON — Two U.S. cardinals and 20 other U.S. bishops could retire because of age this year.

There are eight active U.S. bishops, including a cardinal, who have already turned 75. Another cardinal and 13 other bishops will celebrate their 75th birthday in 2012.

At age 75, bishops are required by canon law to submit their resignation to the pope.

With the retirements in 2011 of Cardinals Bernard F. Law, Justin Rigali and Roger M. Mahony and the death of Cardinal John P. Foley, Cardinal William J. Levada, prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was the only U.S. cardinal still active over age 75 at the start of the year.

The former archbishop of San Francisco and Portland, Ore., and former auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles turned 75 on June 15, 2011, but is expected to remain in the Vatican post until Pope Benedict XVI names his successor. He took the job at the Vatican in 2005 and became a cardinal in 2006.

Turning 75 on Jan. 16, 2012, is Cardinal Francis E. George, who has served as archbishop of Chicago since 1997 and was named a cardinal in 1998. He previously served as archbishop of Portland and bishop of Yakima, Wash.

Pope Benedict often has asked cardinals to stay on the job after they reached the age of 75. Even when a cardinal retires in his 70s, he remains an active member of the College of Cardinals, eligible to enter a conclave and vote for a new pope, until age 80.

In addition to Cardinal Levada, the seven other active U.S. bishops who are already 75 and the dates of their 75th birthday are:

• Bishop Fabian W. Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Neb., Sept. 6, 2010.

• Bishop Thomas G. Doran of Rockford, Ill., Feb. 20, 2011.

• Bishop Edward U. Kmiec of Buffalo, N.Y., June 4, 2011.

• Archbishop George H. Niederauer of San Francisco, June 14, 2011.

• Bishop Donald W. Trautman of Erie, Pa., June 24, 2011.

• Bishop Ricardo Ramirez of Las Cruces, N.M., Sept. 12, 2011.

• Bishop Tod D. Brown of Orange, Calif., Nov. 15, 2011.

In addition to Cardinal George, the 13 bishops turning 75 in 2012 and the dates of their 75th birthday are:

• Archbishop John G. Vlazny of Portland, Feb. 22.

• Auxiliary Bishop Roger W. Gries of Cleveland, March 26.

• Bishop Michael D. Pfeifer of San Angelo, Texas, May 18.

• Bishop Walter A. Hurley of Grand Rapids, Mich., May 30.

• Bishop Robert J. Shaheen of the Maronite Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon, June 3.

• Bishop John F. Kinney of St. Cloud, Minn., June 11.

• Bishop Matthew H. Clark of Rochester, N.Y., July 15.

• Auxiliary Bishop Paul H. Walsh of Rockville Centre, N.Y., Aug. 17.

• Bishop Ibrahim N. Ibrahim of the Chaldean Eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle, Oct. 1.

• Archbishop Henry J. Mansell of Hartford, Conn., Oct. 10.

• Bishop Joseph N. Latino of Jackson, Miss., Oct. 21.

• Auxiliary Bishop John C. Dunne of Rockville Centre, Oct. 30.

• Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell of Springfield, Mass., Dec. 23.

 
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