.- The Vatican announced on Wednesday that Pope Benedict has appointed Father Joseph Siegel as an auxiliary bishop for the Diocese of Joliet, Illinois. Bishop-elect Siegel is currently a pastor of Visitation Parish in Elmhurst, Ill. and has served the Diocese of Joliet since his ordination in 1988.
“I was both humbled and honored when I received the unexpected news that Pope Benedict had named me to serve as auxiliary bishop of Joliet,” Bishop-elect Siegel said on Wednesday.
“I am deeply grateful to our Holy Father and Bishop Sartain and I pray that I will be worthy of the trust they have placed in me as I strive to be a faithful shepherd after the heart of Jesus,” Bishop-elect Siegel added. He also asked for prayers so that he “may serve the people of this Diocese with love, wisdom and courage.”
In addition to being a diocesan priest and pastor, Father Siegel has held many leadership roles in the Diocese of Joliet. He has been a member and also chairman of the Presbyteral Council, director of Continuing Formation for Priests and a member of the Diocesan Vocation board. His currently a member of the Bishop's Respect Life Advisory Board and chair of the Steering Committee for the Joliet Diocesan Year of the Eucharist and Eucharistic Congress.
As an auxiliary bishop, Fr. Siegel will assist Bishop J. Peter Sartain in shepherding the Diocese of Joliet.
Speaking about Fr. Siegel's appointment, Bishop Sartain said, “I personally look forward to working in collaboration with him in the pastoral care of our people... He is deeply respected by his parishioners and brother priests, and he will bring many gifts to this new ministry. ”
Bishop-elect Siegel will be ordained on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at the Cathedral of St. Raymond in Joliet.