.- Pope Benedict XVI has named Oklahoma priest Msgr. Edward John Weisenburger as the new bishop of Salina, Kansas.
Bishop-elect Weisenburger, 51, will succeed former Salina Bishop Paul S. Coakely, who was named Archbishop of Oklahoma City on Dec. 16. The bishop-elect is presently the vicar general of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City and the rector of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cathedral.
He served as an on-site chaplain for rescue workers at the site of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City after the April 19, 1995 bombing that killed 168 people.
He was born in Alton, Ill. on Dec. 23, 1960. His father was a military officer and his mother was a homemaker. He spent two years of his childhood in Hays, Kan. but grew up in Lawton, Okla.
The bishop-elect attended Conception Seminary College in Conception, Mo. and the American College Seminary at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium. He was ordained to the priesthood in December 1987, after which he received a pontifical degree in canon law from the University of St. Paul in Ottawa, Canada.
He has served as pastor of Holy Trinity Parish in Okarche, Okla. and as promoter of justice for the cause of canonization of Servant of God Fr. Stanley Francis Rother. He has also worked in prison ministry and served on the archdiocesan tribunal for 20 years.
In October 2009, he was appointed a prelate of honor by Pope Benedict XVI and given the title reverend monsignor.
He enjoys reading and occasional travel.
The bishop-elect’s mother died in 1998, while his father resides in Oklahoma City. He has two sisters, a brother, and several nieces and nephews.
The date of his episcopal ordination and installation as Bishop of Salina will be announced in the near future.
The Diocese of Salina has over 48,000 Catholics in a population of 342,000. There are 76 priests in the diocese, seven permanent deacons, and 167 vowed religious.