bishop delaney of fort worth dies

Most Rev. Joseph P. Delaney, Bishop of Fort Worth since 1981, died in his sleep last night at age 70. He had been dealing with on-going medical problems in recent years.
Pope Benedict XVI had already appointed Msgr. Kevin Vann to be ordained as coadjutor bishop, meaning he would succeed Bishop Delaney at his retirement or death. Bishop-elect Vann’s ordination was previously scheduled for tomorrow. Diocesan officials have reported that his ordination will still be held with slight modifications as he will be ordained as the Bishop of Fort Worth instead of an assistant bishop.
Bishop Delaney was born in Fall River, Massachusetts on August 29, 1934. He studied for the priesthood in seminaries in Boston, Washington, and Rome, and was ordained a priest on December 18, 1960 for the Diocese of Fall River.
After serving six years as associate pastor, high school teacher, and assistant superintendent of schools in Taunton, Massachusetts, he received permission of his bishop to work in the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas. He served in that diocese as an associate pastor, the pastor of two parishes, superintendent of schools, editor of the diocesan newspaper, judicial vicar, and co-chancellor.
Bishop Delaney was named the second bishop of the Diocese of Fort Worth by Pope John Paul II on July 10, 1981, and was ordained to the episcopacy September 13, 1981.
Bishop Delaney oversaw great expansion in the diocesan offices, moving into the Cathedral’s basement as his first office to opening the Catholic Center, the central offices for the Diocese. In 1999, he started the process for the First Synod of the Diocese of Fort Worth, a long-range planning process for the Diocese. He selected me to be a delegate for those proceedings and I was appointed to the Youth Concerns Committee to help ensure the Synodal documents reflected a proper respect for the needs of youth ministry in the church of tomorrow.
May the angels of the Lord take him to the heavenly banquet.





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