Laurence Julius FitzSimon

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Laurence Julius FitzSimon (January 31, 1895 – July 2, 1958) was an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Bishop of Amarillo from 1941 until his death in 1958.

Biography[edit]

Laurence FitzSimon was born in San Antonio, Texas, to John and Theodora (née Okelmann) FitzSimon.[1] He and his family moved to Castroville the following year.[1] He attended St. Anthony's College in San Antonio from 1907 until 1911, when he was sent to further his studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome.[2] In 1916 he was forced to return to Texas due to poor health.[1] After recuperating, he served in the United States Navy during World War I.[2] He later resumed his theological studies in 1919 at St. Meinrad's Seminary in Indiana.[1]

FitzSimon was ordained to the priesthood on May 17, 1921.[3] He then taught at St. John's Seminary in San Antonio for four years, when he became pastor of Runge.[1] He was later transferred to Kenedy and then to Seguin in 1932.[1] He also served as chancellor of the Archdiocese of San Antonio from 1932 to 1941.[2]

On August 1, 1941, FitzSimon was appointed the third Bishop of Amarillo by Pope Pius XII.[3] He received his episcopal consecration on the following October 22 from Archbishop Amleto Giovanni Cicognani, with Bishops Mariano Simon Garriga and Sidney Matthew Metzger serving as co-consecrators.[3] He was later installed at Amarillo on November 5, 1941.[3] During his 17-year-long tenure, the number of churches, priests, schools, and institutions in the diocese more than doubled.[1] In 1951 he became the first American to receive the title of Chanoine d'Honneur from Cardinal Pierre-Marie Gerlier.[1]

FitzSimon died at St. Anthony's Hospital in Amarillo, aged 63. He is buried in Llano Cemetery.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "FITZSIMON, LAURENCE JULIUS (1895-1958)". Texas State Historical Association. 
  2. ^ a b c Curtis, Georgina Pell (1947). The American Catholic Who's Who. VII. Grosse Pointe, Michigan: Walter Romig. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Bishop Laurence Julius FitzSimon". Catholic-Hierarchy.org. 
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Robert Emmet Lucey
Bishop of Amarillo
1941—1958
Succeeded by
John Louis Morkovsky