Feb 21, 2005 / 22:00 pm
West Virginia's 76,000 Catholics will have a new bishop today. Bishop-elect Michael J. Bransfield succeeds retiring Bishop Bernard W. Schmitt.
The new bishop of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston will be ordained today at the Cathedral of St. Joseph at 2 p.m. before a crowd of 400 invited guests.
The bishop-elect expressed his admiration for West Virginia’s new Catholic and pro-life Democratic governor, Joe Manchin.
The Philadelphia native was ordained to the priesthood in 1971 and holds master's degree in philosophy from The Catholic University of America. Prior to being named a bishop, he had served as the rector of the basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.