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Press Release

Very Reverend John F. Doerfler Appointed Bishop of Diocese of Marquette, Michigan

Diocese-Green-Bay-LogoBishop-designate-John-DoerflerGREEN BAY, Wis. (Dec. 17, 2013) -- The Holy Father, Pope Francis, today announced the appointment of the Very Reverend John F. Doerfler as the 13th bishop of the Diocese of Marquette, Michigan. Bishop-elect Doerfler will be ordained a bishop and take possession of the Diocese of Marquette at a Mass on Tuesday, February 11, 2014, at a time and location to be determined.

Bishop David L. Ricken said of the appointment of Bishop-elect Doerfler, "I could not be more delighted that the Holy Father has chosen to elevate Father John Doerfler to the Episcopacy as the 13th bishop of the Diocese of Marquette. Bishop-elect Doerfler, a native of the Diocese of Green Bay, has excelled in his service to this diocese in the many positions he has held and has been a trusted advisor on moral and canonical issues to the bishop. His presence, ministry and expertise will be sorely missed here, but he will bring many gifts to the Diocese of Marquette where he will serve and lead the faithful as the diocese's 13th bishop."

Currently Vicar General

Bishop-elect Doerfler, age 49, is presently the Vicar General of the Diocese of Green Bay, as well as a part-time lecturer on moral theology at Sacred Heart School of Theology, Hales Corners, Wis. A native of Appleton, Wis., Bishop-elect Doerfler was born Nov. 2, 1964, to Henry Doerfler (deceased) and Germaine (Mancl) Doerfler. He attended Appleton West High School (1983); College of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN – B.A. Philosophy and Classics (1987); Gregorian University, Rome – Bachelor of Sacred Theology (S.T.B.) (1990); and The Catholic University of America, Washington D.C.- Licentiate of Canon (church) Law (J.C.L.) (1997). He continued his studies at the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and the Family on the campus of The Catholic University of America receiving his Licentiate (S.T.L) and Doctorate (S.T.D) in Sacred Theology (1999 and 2008).

Bishop-elect Doerfler was ordained a priest on July 13, 1991, by then-Bishop of Green Bay, Robert Banks, at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral in Green Bay. His first appointment was as Parochial Vicar at St. John Nepomucene, Little Chute, Wis. (1991-95).

Served in Administrative Positions

Other appointments have included:

  • Parochial Vicar, St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Green Bay, June 1997 – Nov. 1999
  • Defender of the Bond, Tribunal of the Diocese of Green Bay, June 1997 – Jan. 1999
  • Assistant Chancellor, Diocese of Green Bay, Jan. 1998 – Dec. 2004
  • Judge, Tribunal of the Diocese of Green Bay, Jan. 1999 – Dec. 2004
  • Administrator, Holy Trinity Parish, Casco, Wis., Nov. 1999 – Aug. 2004
  • Administrator – St. Francis Xavier Cathedral and St. John the Evangelist Parish, Green Bay, Aug.- Dec. 2004
  • Chaplain to Legatus, Dec. 2004 – present
  • Chancellor of the Diocese of Green Bay, Jan. 2005 – June 2013
  • Administrator, St. John the Evangelist Parish, Green Bay, Feb. 2005 – Sept. 2005
  • Vicar General of the Diocese of Green Bay, March 2005 – present
  • Sacramental Minister, St. Francis Xavier Cathedral and Ss. Peter and Paul Parish, Green Bay, Sept. 2005-07
  • College of Consultors, Jan. 2006 (reappointed Jan. 2011)
  • Spiritual Advisor to the Widows of Prayer, June 2007 – Sept. 2009
  • Sacramental Minister, St. Martin Parish, Cecil, Sept. 2007 – June 2013
  • Rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help, March 2009 – July 2011
  • Administrator, St. Joseph Parish, Sturgeon Bay, and Ss. Peter and Paul, Institute, July 2013 – Aug. 2013
  • Part-time Lecturer in Moral Theology – Sacred Heart School of Theology, Hales Corners, Wis. – 2013

Provided Many Ministerial Services

Other ministerial service includes:

  • Spiritual Director for Teens Encounter Christ retreats
  • Hispanic Ministry (monthly Mass in Spanish), Dec. 2002 – Oct. 2008
  • Retreat Master, Holy Name of Jesus Retreat House
  • Presenting Team for Retrouvaille weekends
  • Served one term as the chair of the Marriage Research Committee of the Canon Law Society of America
  • Offered several adult education conferences
  • Taught courses in diocesan lay ministry formation programs
  • Spiritual Advisor to the Courage Ministry in the Diocese of Green Bay, 2010 to present

Expert in Medical Ethics

Bishop-elect Doerfler has also written and published several articles on medical ethics.

Bishop-elect Doerfler will become the 13th bishop of the Diocese of Marquette, succeeding the Most Reverend Alexander K. Sample, who served the Diocese of Marquette from 2006-2013, and now serves as Archbishop of Portland, Ore.

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Who We Are

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay works to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ by helping people in need and by providing academic, leadership and spiritual formation opportunities to parish and school leaders. Established in 1868, the Diocese is composed of 324,000 Catholics in 16 counties: Brown, Calumet, Door, Florence, Forest, Kewaunee, Langlade, Manitowoc, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Outagamie, Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara and Winnebago.

Contact

Justine Lodl
Director of Communications 
Phone: (920) 272-8213 
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Amber Backus
Communications Coordinator
Phone: (920) 272-8209 
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