Syracuse, N.Y., Apr 21, 2009 / 08:50 am America/Denver (CNA).
The Diocese of Syracuse in New York received the news this morning that it has a new shepherd—Bishop Robert J. Cunningham. The Buffalo-born bishop will move from the Diocese of Ogdensburg in upstate New York to serve the faithful in his new diocese.
Pope Benedict's appointment of Bishop Cunningham to lead the Diocese of Syracuse comes almost two years after Bishop James Moynihan submitted his resignation upon reaching the age of 75. Until Bishop Cunningham is installed on May 26 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Syracuse, Bishop Moynihan will continue to oversee the diocese.
Bishop Cunningham was born in Buffalo, New York to Cecil and Grace Cunningham on June 18, 1943.
He attended college and seminary at St. John Vianney Seminary, East Aurora, where he earned both Bachelor of Arts and Master of Divinity degrees. In 1978 he received a Licentiate Degree in Canon Law from the Catholic University of America.
Bishop Cunningham was ordained to the priesthood by Auxiliary Bishop Bernard J. McLaughlin on May 24, 1969 at St. Joseph New Cathedral in Buffalo. His first assignment was associate pastor at Blessed Sacrament Parish, Kenmore. In 1972 he became the assistant pastor at his home parish of St. John the Baptist, Kenmore.