Jerome Edward Listecki

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The Most Reverend
Jerome Edward Listecki
Archbishop of Milwaukee
JeromeListecki.jpg
Appointed November 14, 2009
Installed January 4, 2010
Predecessor Timothy M. Dolan
Orders
Ordination May 14, 1975
by John Cody
Consecration January 8, 2001
by Francis George
Personal details
Born (1949-03-12) March 12, 1949 (age 65)
Chicago, Illinois
Previous post Bishop of La Crosse (2004–2009)
Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago (2000–2004)
Alma mater Niles College
St. Mary of the Lake Seminary
Motto Life is Christ
Coat of arms
Styles of
Jerome Edward Listecki
Coat of arms of Jerome Edward Listecki.svg
Reference style The Most Reverend
Spoken style Your Excellency
Religious style Archbishop

Jerome Edward Listecki (born March 12, 1949) is an American archbishop of the Roman Catholic Church. He was an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago (2001–2004) before serving as Bishop of La Crosse (2004–2009). He was named Archbishop of Milwaukee by Pope Benedict XVI on November 14, 2009. He was installed on January 4, 2010 by the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States of America, Archbishop Pietro Sambi. As Archbishop of Milwaukee, the metropolitan see of the Ecclesiastical Province of Milwaukee (the entire state of Wisconsin), he received the pallium on June 29, 2010 from Pope Benedict XVI.[1]

Biography[edit]

Jerome Listecki was born in Chicago and raised on the Southeast Side.[2] His father (d. 1986) owned a tavern before working as a bus driver for the Chicago Transit Authority.[2] Jerome received his early education at the parochial school of St. Michael the Archangel Church before attending Quigley Preparatory Seminary South, from where he graduated in 1967.[3] He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Saint Joseph College Seminary in 1971, and completed his theological studies at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary (in Mundelein, Illinois).[3] During his summers as a seminarian, he worked in a blast furnace centering plant in the US Steel mills near Chicago.[4] He was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal John Cody on May 14, 1975.[5]

After studies in canon law and moral theology in Rome, Listecki earned a licentiate and doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in 1981 with a dissertation entitled Indissolubility and the United Methodist Church. He previously earned a Juris Doctor degree from DePaul University,[6] making him the holder of degrees utriusque juris as Doctor of Canon and Civil Law. During his service to the Archdiocese of Chicago, he taught at both Quigley Preparatory Seminary North (later Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary) and St. Mary of the Lake Seminary, served in a number of Chicago parishes and as pastor of St. Ignatius Church, worked within the Archdiocesan Chancery as an Appellate Judge for the Matrimonial Tribunal and separately as in-house legal counsel for the Archdiocese of Chicago from 1985–87, and served as the chaplain to the Catholic Physicians' Guild of Chicago.[7]

His media experience included co-hosting the Chicago radio station WIND program "Catholic Conversation" from 1978–79,[8] his regular participation as celebrant for the WGN TV "Mass for Shut-ins", as well as service as a producer for several other television programs.[9] On November 7, 2000, he was appointed auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Chicago by Pope John Paul II; he was consecrated on January 8, 2001.

On December 29, 2004, Listecki was appointed Bishop of the Diocese of La Crosse, succeeding Bishop Raymond Leo Burke, who became archbishop of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Missouri in St. Louis, Missouri.[10][11] On March 1, 2005, he was installed as Bishop of the Diocese of La Crosse.[2][12]

At La Crosse he initiated a $50 million fundraising campaign, a planning process to restructure ministry and parishes in the diocese,[13] and was instrumental in the development of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, a project initiated by his predecessor, Bishop Burke. On January 3, 2010, Listecki was installed as Archbishop of Milwaukee and on January 12, 2010 he testified before the Wisconsin State Senate opposing a bill to remove time limits on sex abuse cases, claiming the bill was designed to bankrupt the church.[14]

Listecki served as an Army Reserve Chaplain in the United States Army Reserves for 20 years, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel.

Criticism[edit]

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) criticized Archbishop Listecki on January 6, 2010, for allowing retired archbishops Rembert Weakland of Milwaukee and Daniel Edward Pilarczyk of Cincinnati, who were implicated in cases of sexual abuse which were covered up, to say Mass at St. John's Cathedral in Milwaukee.[15] On January 12, 2010, during a hearing of the Wisconsin State Senate on a bill to extend the statute of limitations for reporting abuse as supported by Milwaukee District Attorney John Chisholm, State Senator Glenn Grothman joined in this criticism, and also questioned Listecki why he allowed Weakland, who had been accused of moving around abusive priests, to keep his title as Emeritus Archbishop of Milwaukee, and for retaining the name Weakland Center on the pastoral center at St. John's Cathedral.[16] Listecki testified against the bill, saying it would single out Catholic institutions and bankrupt the Milwaukee Archdiocese.[17][18]

Listecki was publicly criticized in February 2010 by Jerry Matysik, the Eau Claire Police Chief and SNAP for allegedly misleading the Wisconsin State Legislature about the LaCrosse diocese abuse notification procedure in Listecki's testimony against extending the statute of limitations, stating,"Archbishop Listecki appears more interested in protecting the organization than he is in protecting children,"[19] and again in August 2010 by SNAP for passing up action on an abuse claim due to lack of evidence.[20]

The Archbishop apologized to victims of clergy sexual abuse in a statement made on March 30, 2010, in which he declared that both the individual perpetrators, as well as the bishops who failed to stop the abuse, "go against everything the Church and the priesthood represent."[21] He credited the bravery of "victim-survivors" who persisted in bringing their cases to light and forcing the Church to change. "We owe these victims/survivors our deep gratitude and we acknowledge our own actions have not always expressed that gratitude adequately." He defended Pope Benedict XVI's role in the matter, saying, "[M]istakes were made in the Lawrence Murphy case. The mistakes were not made in Rome in 1996, 1997 and 1998. The mistakes were made here, in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, in the 1970s, the 1980s and the 1990s, by the Church, by civil authorities, by Church officials, and by bishops. And for that, I beg your forgiveness in the name of the Church and in the name of this Archdiocese of Milwaukee".

Three years later, the New York Times commented,

It is disturbing that the current Milwaukee leader, Archbishop Jerome Listecki, said last week that the church underwent an "arc of understanding" across time to come to grips with the scandal — as if the statutory rapes of children were not always a glaring crime in the eyes of society as well as the church itself.[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1] "Archbishop Listecki to Receive Pallium from Pope on 6/29/10 in Rome," Archdiocese of Milwaukee website, accessed 10/9/10
  2. ^ a b c "Press Conference". Father Pat's Place. December 29, 2004. 
  3. ^ a b "Curriculum Vitae". Roman Catholic Diocese of La Crosse. 
  4. ^ Wamble, Michael. "The Interview". The Catholic New World. 
  5. ^ "Archbishop Jerome Edward Listecki". Catholic-Hierarchy.org. 
  6. ^ [2] "New auxiliary bishop for archdiocese", Chicago Catholic New World, 11/12/00
  7. ^ [3] Catholic Physicians' Guild of Chicago website, accessed 11/4/09
  8. ^ "The great team of Furlan and Listecki". Chnonline.org. December 31, 2009. Retrieved October 21, 2010. 
  9. ^ [4] Cathedral of St. Joseph the Workman website, accessed 11/5/09
  10. ^ La Crosse Tribune – 7.0 : Chicagoan Listecki named new bishop
  11. ^ La Crosse Tribune – 7.0 : Listecki called ‘pleasant, down to earth'
  12. ^ [5] Episcopal Lineage
  13. ^ [6] "Q&A: Listecki looks at diocese future, past after two years as bishop", La Crosse Tribune July 14, 2007
  14. ^ "Archbishop Opposes Bill To Remove Time Limits On Sex Abuse Cases". Wisn.com. January 12, 2010. Retrieved October 21, 2010. 
  15. ^ [7] "Victims group questions visits by two retired archbishops", Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 1/6/10
  16. ^ [8] Wisconsin Radio Network website, "Listecki pressed about Weakland's status", January 12, 2010, accessed October 19, 2010
  17. ^ [9] "Listecki opposes lifting limits on abuse suits: Bill may be short votes in Senate, co-sponsor says", Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 1/12/10
  18. ^ [10] www.wisn.com, "Archbishop Opposes Bill To Remove Time Limits On Sex Abuse Cases: SNAP Pleased Milwaukee County District Attorney Supports Bill," 1/12/10, accessed 10/19/10
  19. ^ [11] "Listecki misled legislators on policy, Eau Claire police chief says", Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, February 4, 2010
  20. ^ [12] "Listecki passed up action on priest for lack of evidence: La Crosse Diocese spokeswoman says incident did not meet standards for review", Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, August 5, 2010
  21. ^ [13] "Archbishop Listecki Comments on Clergy Abuse at Chrism Mass"
  22. ^ Cardinal Dolan and the Sexual Abuse Scandal
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Raymond Leo Burke
Roman Catholic Bishop of La Crosse
2004–2009
Succeeded by
William P. Callahan
Preceded by
Timothy M. Dolan
Roman Catholic Archbishop of Milwaukee
2010–present
Incumbent