Tuesday, July 23, 2002

A New Auxiliary Bishop for Detroit

Yesterday Cardinal Maida, the Archbishop of Detroit, announced the appointment of Msgr. Earl Boyea, who is currently the rector of the Pontifical College Josephinum, as the newest auxiliary bishop of Detroit.

This is great news for Catholics in Detroit and elsewhere! Prior to becoming rector of the Josephinum, Msgr. Boyea was the Academic Dean of Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. I was privileged to have him as my spiritual director during my first two years at Sacred Heart. He was a great teacher, mentor, and friend to me then and now. He honored me further by serving as the homilist for my First Mass. I can personally testify to his love for and fidelity to the Church, his loyalty to our Holy Father John Paul II, and his love for the priesthood.

Msgr. Boyea was one of the more popular members of the faculty at Sacred Heart, because of his down-to-earth good humor and generosity. He was also known as something of a prankster and practical joker. But he was also one of our more demanding professors (he taught Church history): He expected that we mastered the material, and the unstinting workload of his classes caused a fair bit of grumbling (never, of course, on my part...).

Most of all, he imparted to me and my brother seminarians zeal and the desire for excellence. I think he will strive to impart those same qualities to the people he serves as bishop. I think his appointment as bishop bodes well for the future of the Church in Michigan and for our country. I will be happy to pray for him: that his service as bishop will be long and fruitful, that he will grow in zeal and holiness, and that he will merit the reward of his labors one day in heaven.