William E. Lori

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The Most Reverend

William Edward Lori
Archbishop of Baltimore
AppointedMarch 20, 2012
InstalledMay 16, 2012
PredecessorEdwin Frederick O'Brien
OrdinationMay 14, 1977
by William Wakefield Baum
ConsecrationApril 20, 1995
by James Aloysius Hickey
Personal details
Born (1951-05-06) May 6, 1951 (age 69)
Louisville, Kentucky, USA
DenominationRoman Catholic
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Coat of armsWilliam Edward Lori's coat of arms
Styles of
William E. Lori
Coat of arms of William Edward Lori.svg
Reference styleThe Most Reverend
Spoken styleYour Excellency[1]
Religious styleArchbishop
Posthumous stylen/a

William Edward Lori (born May 6, 1951) is an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church who is serving as the 16th Archbishop of Baltimore since 2012. He was previously the fourth Bishop of Bridgeport,[2] and before that an Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Washington.[3]



He attended the Seminary of Saint Pius X in Erlanger, Kentucky where he earned a bachelor's degree in 1973.[4] He earned an M.A. from Mount Saint Mary's Seminary in 1977 and a S.T.D. from The Catholic University of America in 1982.

Priestly ministry[edit]

Lori was ordained by Cardinal William Baum on May 14, 1977 for the Archdiocese of Washington. After ordination he served as a parochial vicar at St. Joseph Parish in Largo, MD from 1977 until 1982. He earned a doctoral degree from The Catholic University of America in 1982 and served as a theological advisor to Cardinal James Hickey from 1982 until 2000. He also served as the director of ecumenical affairs for the Archdiocese from 1982–1986 and as Cardinal Hickey's priest–secretary from 1983 until 1994. In 1994, Lori became the chancellor, vicar general, and moderator of the curia.[5]

Episcopal ministry[edit]

Lori was ordained to the episcopacy as an Auxiliary Bishop of Washington and Titular Bishop of Bulla on April 20, 1995.

Bishop of Bridgeport[edit]

In March 2001, he was appointed the Bishop of Bridgeport. As Bishop of Bridgeport, Lori launched new initiatives in support of catholic education, vocations, Catholic Charities, pastoral services, and other ministries, while improving financial stewardship.[6] He also worked collaboratively with the laity to increase participation and foster lay leadership throughout the Diocese of Bridgeport. While serving in Bridgeport, Lori fought against releasing the names of diocesan priests who were being sued for sexual abuse, part of the Sexual abuse scandal in Bridgeport diocese. The Supreme Court ruled against Lori and the diocese [7].

In 2002, Lori participated in writing the Dallas Charter. The initial draft applied to clerics, which includes bishops, priests, and deacons. The revised draft mentioned only priests and deacons, thus removing bishops from its purview. When questioned why, he is reported as saying the drafting committee "decided we would limit it to priests and deacons, as the disciplining of bishops is beyond the purview of this document. 'Cleric' would cover all three, so we decided not to use the word "cleric.'"[8]

Archbishop of Baltimore[edit]

On March 20, 2012 Lori was appointed Archbishop of Baltimore by Pope Benedict XVI and he assumed that role upon installation May 16, 2012.[9] In January 2019, Lori instituted an initiative for reporting allegations against any bishop in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The policy was drafted by the archdiocesan Independent Review Board. As metropolitan archbishop, Lori was appointed apostolic administrator of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, following the retirement of Michael J. Bransfield, and headed an investigation into allegations that Bransfield had engaged in sexual harassment and engaged in inappropriate financial transactions.

In June, 2019, the Washington Post[10] obtained copies of the first draft of that report, as well as the final report that was sent to the Holy See. The names of several cardinals and bishops who had received payments from Bransfield were omitted in the final version, including that of Lori himself. When this news became public, Lori returned $7,500 to the diocese of Wheeling, West Virginia and asked that it be given to Catholic Charities. Other bishops followed his example.[11] Lori admitted to the Baltimore Sun newspaper that he was responsible for removing the names of the cash recipients from the report,[12] stating later “looking back on this in hindsight, I would say that judgment call was a mistake.”


  • Chancellor and chairman of the board, St. Mary's Seminary and University
  • Chancellor, Mount St. Mary's Seminary
  • Former chairman of the board, The Catholic University of America
  • Former chairman of the board, Sacred Heart University
  • Former chairman and current member, USCCB Committee on Doctrine
  • Former chairman, USCCB Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty
  • Chairman, USCCB Ad Hoc Committee on Universities and Colleges
  • Member, USCCB Committee on Pro–Life Activities
  • Member, USCCB Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage
  • Former member, USCCB Ad Hoc Committee on Sexual Abuse
  • Former member, USCCB Committee on Catholic Education
  • Supreme Chaplain of the Knights of Columbus since 2005[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ His Excellency Archbishop William E. Lori. Retrieved November 30, 2014
  2. ^ Biography of Bishop William E. Lori, S.T.D. Retrieved 2010-03-04.
  3. ^ Bishop William Edward Lori Retrieved 2010-03-04.
  4. ^ Bishop William Lori Elected Chairman of Catholic University’s Board of Trustees Retrieved 2010-03-04.
  5. ^ "Pope Names Washington Auxiliary Bishop William Lori as Bishop of Bridgeport, CT" Archived 24 December 2005.
  6. ^ a b "Biography of Archbishop William E. Lori", Archdiocese of Baltimore
  7. ^ DeGeorge, Vincent. "Can Baltimore's archbishop bring accountability to West Virginia's Catholic Church?", The Baltimore Sun, December 5, 2018
  8. ^ Flynn, J.D., "McCarrick, the bishops, and unanswered questions", July 23, 2018
  9. ^ "NOMINA DELL'ARCIVESCOVO DI BALTIMORE (U.S.A.)" (in Italian). Holy See Press Office. March 20, 2012. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013.
  10. ^ W. Va Bishop gave powerful cardinals and other priests $350,000 in cash gifts Washington Post, June 5, 2019.
  11. ^ Vatican Cardinal, other priests, to return cash gifts Washington Post, June 7 2019
  12. ^ In report to Vatican, Baltimore Archbishop Lori deleted mention of gifts from bishop he investigated Baltimore Sun, June 5, 2019

External links[edit]

Episcopal succession[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Federico Bonifacio Madersbacher Gasteiger OFM
Titular Bishop of Bulla
February 28, 1995 – January 23, 2001
Succeeded by
Percival Joseph Fernandez
Preceded by
Edward Egan
Bishop of Bridgeport
January 23, 2001 – March 20, 2012
Succeeded by
Frank Joseph Caggiano
Preceded by
Thomas Vose Daily
Supreme Chaplain of the Knights of Columbus
Preceded by
Edwin Frederick O'Brien
Archbishop of Baltimore
March 20, 2012–present