Wendelin Joseph Nold

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Wendelin Joseph Nold (January 18, 1900 – October 1, 1981) was an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as Bishop of Galveston-Houston from 1950 to 1975.


Wendelin Nold was born in Bonham, Texas, to Wendelin Joseph and Mary Elizabeth (née Charles) Nold.[1] After attending parochial schools in Cleburne and Fort Worth, he studied at St. Mary's Seminary in La Porte, from where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1921.[1] He then furthered his studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome, and there earned a doctorate in sacred theology in 1925.[1] While in Rome, he was ordained to the priesthood on April 11, 1925.[2]

Upon his return to Texas, Nold served as a curate at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Dallas, and became the first pastor of Christ the King Church in 1941.[1] In addition to his pastoral duties, he also served in the chancery as a consultor, synodal judge, synodal examiner, director of the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, and director of Catholic Action.[1] He was raised to the rank of Papal Chamberlain in 1936, Domestic Prelate in 1942, and prothonotary apostolic in 1946.[1]

On November 29, 1947, Nold was appointed Coadjutor Bishop of Galveston and Titular Bishop of Sasima by Pope Pius XII.[2] He received his episcopal consecration on February 25, 1948 from Bishop Joseph Patrick Lynch, with Bishops Christopher Edward Byrne and Augustine Danglmayr serving as co-consecrators.[2] Upon the death of Bishop Byrne, Nold succeeded him as the fifth Bishop of Galveston on April 1, 1950.[2] He was the first native Texan to hold that office.[3]

Due to the tremendous growth in the City of Houston, in 1959 Bishop Nold was permitted by Rome to build a Cathedral of convenience in Houston, and Sacred Heart Church was named co-cathedral. This did not change the status of the City of Galveston as an Episcopal city, however it did permit full Episcopal ceremonies to be held in Houston, as well at St. Mary's Cathedral Basilica in Galveston.[4] The diocese was renamed the Diocese of Galveston-Houston on July 25, 1959.[5]

In September 1961, Nold ordered that all Catholic schools in the diocese be racially integrated.[1] Due to progressive blindness, he was prompted to resign from the administration of the diocese.[3] In April 1963, he received, as his coadjutor bishop, Bishop John Louis Morkovsky, who assumed charge of the administration of the diocese.[3] He attended the Second Vatican Council from 1962 to 1965. During his tenure he established forty-seven parishes and fourteen missions, as well as several schools.[1] After twenty-five years as bishop, Nold resigned on April 22, 1975.[2] He later died at age 81.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "NOLD, WENDELIN J. (1900-1981)". Handbook of Texas Online.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Bishop Wendelin Joseph Nold". Catholic-Hierarchy.org.[self-published source]
  3. ^ a b c "History of the Archdiocese". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston.
  4. ^ AMERICAN CATHOLICS/Bishops celebrate 200th birthday
  5. ^ "Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston". Catholic-Hierarchy.org.[self-published source]

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Christopher Edward Byrne
Bishop of Galveston-Houston
Succeeded by
John Louis Morkovsky