Up to 23 U.S. Bishops Could Retire in 2005

Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON -- Up to 23 U.S. bishops -- including three cardinals --
could retire because of age this year.

There are only three still-active bishops who have already turned 75,
but 20 others will celebrate their 75th birthday in 2005.

Cardinal Edmund C. Szoka, 77, who has been in Vatican service since
1990, has been the oldest active U.S. cardinal since July 2003.

This year Cardinals Adam J. Maida of Detroit and Theodore E. McCarrick
of Washington will reach 75, the age at which church law says a bishop
is requested to submit his resignation to the pope.

Even if all three cardinals retire from their current posts, they will
remain eligible to enter a conclave and elect a new pope until age 80.

Cardinal Szoka, who turned 75 on Sept. 14, 2002, is a Michigan native.
He was ordained a priest in 1954 and made first bishop of Gaylord,
Mich., in 1971. He was made archbishop of Detroit in 1981, named a
cardinal in 1988 and called to Rome in 1990 to head the Prefecture for
the Economic Affairs of the Holy See. Since 1997 he has been president
of the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State.

Cardinal Maida, who turns 75 March 18, was born in Pennsylvania.
Ordained a priest of the Pittsburgh Diocese in 1956, he was made bishop
of Green Bay, Wis., in 1983 and archbishop of Detroit in 1990. He was
made a cardinal in 1994.

Cardinal McCarrick, who turns 75 July 7, was born in New York and
ordained a priest there in 1958. He was made an auxiliary bishop of New
York in 1977, first bishop of Metuchen, N.J., in 1981 and archbishop of
Newark, N.J., in 1986. Transferred to the Washington Archdiocese in
November 2000, he was installed there in January 2001 and made a
cardinal the following month.

The two other active U.S. bishops who are already 75 are both from
Eastern Catholic churches. They are:

-- Ruthenian Bishop Andrew Pataki of Passaic, N.J., a priest since 1952,
bishop since 1983 and head of the Passaic Diocese since 1995. He turned
75 Aug. 30, 2002.

-- Bishop Manuel Batakian of the Armenian Catholic Exarchate of U.S.A.
and Canada, a priest since 1954, bishop since 1995 and head of the
exarchate since 2001. He turned 75 Nov. 5, 2004.

Eastern church law asks a bishop to submit his resignation at age 75 to
his patriarch if he is a member of a patriarchal church or to the pope
if his church is not a patriarchate.

In addition to Cardinals Maida and McCarrick, still-active bishops who
will turn 75 in 2005 are, in chronological order:

-- Jan. 21: Auxiliary Bishop John P. Boles of Boston, a priest since1955
and bishop since 1992.

-- Jan. 26: Auxiliary Bishop Thomas J. Gumbleton of Detroit, a priest
since 1956 and bishop since 1968.

-- Feb. 3: Bishop David E. Foley of Birmingham, Ala., a priest since
1956, bishop since 1986 and head of the Birmingham Diocese since 1994.

-- Feb. 15: Bishop Robert E. Mulvee of Providence, R.I., a priest since
1957, bishop since 1977 and head of the Providence Diocese since 1997.

-- March 23: Auxiliary Bishop Joseph M. Sullivan of Brooklyn, N.Y., a
priest since 1956 and bishop since 1980.

-- April 1: Bishop F. Joseph Gossman of Raleigh, N.C., a priest since
1955, bishop since 1968 and head of the Raleigh Diocese since 1975.

-- May 3: Bishop William E. Franklin of Davenport, Iowa, a priest since
1956, bishop since 1987 and head of the Davenport Diocese since 1994.

-- May 11: Ukrainian Bishop Basil H. Losten of Stamford, Conn., a priest
since 1957, bishop since 1971 and head of the Stamford Diocese since 1977.

-- May 20: Auxiliary Bishop William J. Winter of Pittsburgh, a priest
since 1955 and bishop since 1989.

-- Aug. 3: Bishop Kenneth A. Angell of Burlington, Vt., a priest since
1956, bishop since 1974 and head of the Burlington Diocese since 1992.

-- Aug. 8: Bishop John J. Leibrecht of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, Mo.,
a priest since 1956 and a bishop since1984.

-- Aug. 15: Auxiliary Bishop Rene A. Valero of Brooklyn, N.Y., a priest
since 1956 and bishop since 1980.

-- Sept. 3: Auxiliary Bishop George E. Rueger of Worcester, Mass., a
priest since 1958 and bishop since 1987.

-- Also Sept. 3: Bishop Sylvester D. Ryan of Monterey, Calif., a priest
since 1957, bishop since 1990 and head of the Monterey Diocese since 1992.

-- Oct. 22: Bishop Carl F. Mengeling of Lansing, Mich., a priest since
1957 and a bishop since1996.

-- Oct. 23: Auxiliary Bishop Thomas J. Flanagan of San Antonio, a priest
since 1956 and bishop since 1998.

-- Oct. 25: Bishop Raphael M. Fliss of Superior, Wis., a priest since
1956, bishop since 1979 and head of the Superior Diocese since 1985.

-- Dec. 13: Auxiliary Bishop Dominic Carmon of New Orleans, a priest
since 1960 and bishop since1993.

Another prominent bishop who works in the United States could retire
this year as well. Colombian-born Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, apostolic
nuncio to the United States, turns 75 Jan. 27. Ordained a priest in
1953, he entered the papal diplomatic corps in 1957 and was made a
bishop in 1974.

Archbishop Montalvo served in difficult diplomatic posts in Latin
America, North Africa and Central Europe and was head of the Pontifical
Ecclesiastical Academy, the Vatican school for diplomats, before he was
made nuncio to the United States in 1998.