.- Pope Benedict XVI has appointed Bishop R. Daniel Conlon, currently the bishop of Steubenville, Ohio, as the new bishop of Joliet, Illinois.
“I consider it a great privilege to be named as Bishop of the Diocese of Joliet with its rich history, and I look forward to working with those who generously share their gifts to support the many ministries in this diocese,” said Bishop Conlon on May 17, following the announcement of his new post by papal nuncio Archbishop Pietro Sambi. “I look forward to a bright future in this vibrant and growing church.”
Bishop Conlon will be Joliet's fifth bishop. His predecessor, Bishop J. Peter Sartain, became Archbishop of Seattle in December 2010, with Joliet's Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Siegel handling diocesan affairs in the meantime. Bishop Conlon's installation will take place July 14 at Joliet's Cathedral of St. Raymond Nonnatus.
Auxiliary Bishop Siegel said he was “overjoyed to receive the news” of Bishop Conlon's appointment. “I know Bishop Conlon will be a blessing to the people of the Diocese of Joliet, building on the strong foundation laid by his predecessors,” he said.
Bishop Conlon was born in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1948. He was ordained a priest in 1977 and served the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in various capacities until 1983, before leaving for a period of time to earn doctorates in canon law and philosophy. He later served as a pastor in an Ohio parish, until his ordination and installation as the Bishop of Steubenville in 2002.
Since then, Bishop Conlon has worked to improve catechesis throughout his diocese and promote vocations to the priesthood, particularly through the diocese's internationally-known Franciscan University of Steubenville.
In recent years he has also assisted the U.S. bishops on matters of marriage, family, and child protection, including drafting their pastoral letter “Marriage and Life in the Divine Plan.”