Joseph Bambera

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His Excellency, The Most Reverend
Joseph Charles Bambera
Bishop of Scranton
Archdiocese Philadelphia
Diocese Scranton
Appointed February 23, 2010
Installed April 26, 2010
Predecessor Joseph Francis Martino
Ordination November 5, 1983
by John O'Connor
Consecration April 26, 2010
by Justin Francis Rigali, James Timlin, and John Dougherty
Personal details
Born (1956-03-21) March 21, 1956 (age 61)
Carbondale, Pennsylvania
Denomination Roman Catholic Church
Styles of
Joseph Charles Bambera
Coat of arms of Joseph Bambera.svg
Reference style
Spoken style Your Excellency
Religious style Bishop

Joseph Charles Bambera (born March 21, 1956) is an American clergyman of the Roman Catholic Church. He is the tenth and current Bishop of Scranton, serving since April 26, 2010.


Early life and education[edit]

Joseph Bambera was born in Carbondale, Pennsylvania, to Joseph and Irene (née Kucharski) Bambera.[1] One of two children, he has a sister, Karen.[1] He attended St. Rose of Lima Elementary School and graduated from St. Rose of Lima High School in 1974.[2] Following graduation, he entered the University of Pittsburgh and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History in 1978.[3]

He then began his studies for the priesthood, attending the University of Scranton and St. Pius X Seminary in Dalton.[1] He continued his studies at Mary Immaculate Seminary in Northampton, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree in 1982.[2] He was ordained to the diaconate by Bishop J. Carroll McCormick on May 14, 1983, and to the priesthood by Bishop John J. O'Connor on November 5, 1983.[4]

Priestly ministry[edit]

Bambera's first assignment was as an assistant pastor at St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Scranton, where he remained for four years.[5]

In 1987, he was transferred to the St. Peter's Cathedral and also served as auditor on the diocesan tribunal, spiritual director of the Legion of Mary, campus minister at Lackawanna College, and diocesan director of pilgrimages.[1] In 1989, he was sent to further his studies in canon law at St. Paul's University in Ottawa, Canada.[1] He earned a Licentiate of Canon Law from St. Paul's in 1991.[2]

Upon his return to Scranton, Bambera was appointed a judge on the diocesan tribunal.[1] He was later named diocesan director of ecumenism and interfaith affairs in 1993, and vicar for priests in 1995.[2] He served as pastor of the Church of the Holy Name of Jesus in Scranton (1994–1997), of the Church of St. John Bosco in Conyngham (1998–2001), and of the Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Dickson City (2001–2007).[2] He was made a Prelate of Honour by Pope John Paul II in 1997, and became episcopal vicar for the Central Region of the diocese in 2005.[2] In July 2007, he was named pastor of both the Church of St. Thomas Aquinas in Archbald and the Church of St. Mary of Czestochowa in Eynon.[2] He was also appointed canonical consultant for Pastoral Planning for the diocese at that time.[1]

He was elected chairman of the diocesan presbyteral council in 2000, and re-elected in 2002.[1] He also served as president of the Board of Pastors at Bishop Hafey High School and Bishop O'Hara High School, and as defender of the bond for the Eparchy of St. Maron of Brooklyn.[1] He was a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Scranton from 2003 to 2009, and was named a member of the Board of Trustees of St. Michael's School in Hoban Heights in 2004.[1]

On August 31, 2009, Bambera was chosen to serve as delegate to Cardinal Justin Francis Rigali, who was the apostolic administrator of the diocese following the resignation of Bishop Joseph Francis Martino.[3] In this position, he oversaw the day-to-day operations of the diocese during the sede vacante.[3]

Bishop of Scranton[edit]

On February 23, 2010, Bambera was appointed the bishop of Scranton by Pope Benedict XVI.[4] [6] Following the appointment, he stated,

[1] His episcopal consecration and installation took place at the Cathedral of St. Peter on April 26.[2]

As Bishop, Bambera serves as the spiritual leader of the 350,000 Catholics in Northeastern Pennsylvania.[7] The Diocese of Scranton currently faces "formidable challenges" on personnel and financial matters.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k 23, 2010.asp "Pope Benedict Appoints Monsignor Joseph C. Bambera To Be Tenth Bishop of Scranton" Check |url= value (help). Roman Catholic Diocese of Scranton. February 23, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Monsignor Joseph C. Bambera named Bishop". Wayne Independent. February 23, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b c Baress, Cecilia (September 1, 2009). "Archbald pastor picked to help lead diocese". The Times-Tribune. 
  4. ^ a b "Bishop Joseph Charles Bambera". David M. Cheney. Retrieved 21 January 2015. [self-published source]
  5. ^ Kevin McDonnell, 2010. "Bishop Bambera –– Beloved Pastor of the People", Catholic Light, 110(7):2–6
  6. ^ [Press Office of the Holy See[permanent dead link]]
  7. ^ a b Palmo, Rocco (February 23, 2010). "He Shall Be Peace: Bambera Gets Scranton...For Good". Whispers in the Loggia. 

External links[edit]

Episcopal succession[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Joseph Francis Martino
Bishop of Scranton