Gerald Thomas Walsh
|Reference style||The Most Reverend|
|Spoken style||Your Excellency|
|Posthumous style||not applicable|
Gerald Thomas Walsh (born April 25, 1942) is an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church, who currently serves as an auxiliary bishop and vicar general of Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York. He was formerly rector of St. Joseph's Seminary from 2007–2013.
Gerald Walsh was born in North Manhattan, as the eldest of the three children of Thomas, a police officer, and Anne (née Haggerty) Walsh, a homemaker who later worked in real estate; his grandparents were born in Ireland. His other sibling are named Michael (b. 1944) and Monica (b. 1950), who is a member of the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary and registered nurse serving as coordinator of health care for priests at St. Joseph's Seminary in Dunwoodie. Gerald attended Good Shepherd School and Power Memorial Academy before entering Iona College in New Rochelle in 1959; there he earned the nickname of "St. Gerry" from his classmates. He then studied at St. Joseph's Seminary, where he obtained his bachelor's degree and his Master's in Divinity in moral theology. He was ordained to the priesthood by Francis Cardinal Spellman on May 27, 1967, in St. Patrick's Cathedral.
He then studied Spanish at the Institute for Intercultural Communication of the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico in Ponce. Upon his return to the United States, he served as parochial vicar of Holy Trinity Church in Manhattan until 1980, also earning his Master's in Social Work from Fordham University in 1983. He worked in Catholic Charities, heading the Department of Family and Children's Services, from 1980 to 1989, and was raised to the rank of Monsignor in 1990. For the next six years, he was pastor of Incarnation Church in Washington Heights.
From January 1996 to August 1998, Walsh served as private secretary to John Cardinal O'Connor. During this time, he accompanied the Cardinal on ten trips to Rome, where he met Pope John Paul II. He later reflected on his time as O'Connor's secretary by saying, "I learned a lot of things I would not have known otherwise, how to handle certain situations". He was then named pastor of St. Elizabeth's Church in Washington Heights, and regional vicar of North Manhattan in September of that same year. In 2003, Walsh was named vicar of development of the archdiocese, serving as its chief fundraiser.
On June 28, 2004, Walsh was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of New York and Titular Bishop of Altiburus by John Paul II. He received his episcopal consecration on the following September 21 from Edward Cardinal Egan, with Bishops Robert Brucato and Patrick Sheridan serving as co-consecrators.
Walsh chose as his episcopal motto: "That All May Be One" (John 17:21). He explained his motto as a call to "unite around the teacher," for "the role of a bishop is to be a teacher, one who teaches primarily by example". In 2007, he was named rector of his alma mater of St. Joseph's Seminary. He was the only bishop to serve as the head of an American seminary.
Bishop Walsh enjoys playing handball, at least until receiving a knee injury, and taking walks in the community. He has also served as associate chaplain of the Knights of Columbus' New York chapter since 1980, and as a member of the archdiocesan Priests' Council and College of Consultors since 2000.
On February 13, 2013, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York, named Gerald Thomas Walsh to be the vicar general of the diocese. He succeeds Dennis Joseph Sullivan, who is now the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Camden.
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- Whispers in the Loggia. From the Rector's Office October 15, 2007
- Catholic New York. Bishop-elect Walsh's breadth of experience enables him to teach by example September 2004