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 Official Newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, WisconsinOctober 10, 2003 Issue 

Breaking News ...
-- Posted: 10/10/2003, 9:38 a.m. Central Time
-- Updated: 10/10/2003, 3:47 p.m. Central Time

New bishop to lead Green Bay Diocese

Pittsburgh Auxiliary Bishop David Zubik will succeed Bishop Robert Banks


photo of Bishop David Zubik
Bishop David Zubik

10/10/03 Statement
by Bishop David A. Zubik

Appointment as Bishop
of Green Bay, WI

"For you I am a Bishop; with you I am a Christian. Being set above you fills me with alarm, whereas being with you gives me great comfort. Danger lies in the first; salvation in the second. How shall I repay the Lord for all the blessings he has given to me. I could say perhaps that I repay them by feeding His sheep, but even though I do this, it is not really I who do it but the grace of God within me." (St. Augustine, Sermon 340)

When I first learned that our Holy Father, Pope John Paul II appointed me as the 11th Bishop of the Diocese of Green Bay in Wisconsin, I quickly remembered the above words of Saint Augustine wherein he reflects on his call as a Bishop.

For as long as I can remember, even as a young boy, I had a deep desire to serve the Church. My wonderful parents, Susan and Stanley Zubik, introduced me to God and taught me to love him in and through the Church. Never did I imagine where service to God in the Church would take me. But wherever God takes me, I know that He generously gives me His grace.

Today I find myself deeply humbled by the Holy Father's appointment of me as the Bishop of Green Bay. First as I thank him for his trust, I once again promise him, the Vicar of Christ on Earth, my obedience, loyalty and respect. I am especially honored that this appointment is announced within the very week that Pope John Paul celebrates his 25th anniversary as our Universal Shepherd and successor to St. Peter.

I also owe a significant debt of gratitude to Bishop Donald Wuerl, Shepherd of the Church of Pittsburgh. Since his installation as Bishop of Pittsburgh nearly 16 years ago, he has trusted me much and taught me even more.

My thanks go to the faithful of Pittsburgh. It is a wonderful Church--very much alive in Christ, very loyal to the Holy Father. While I will miss this Church that has nurtured and nourished my faith throughout the 54 years of my life, the 28 years of my priesthood and the 6 years of my episcopacy, I now turn my heart to the faithful of Green Bay whom I now embrace with the love of Jesus Himself. I look forward to building on the dedicated service of my predecessors, especially Bishop Aloysius Wycislo, Adam Cardinal Maida and particularly Bishop Robert Banks. I am sure that you will well remember that Cardinal Maida was one of my brother priests in Pittsburgh.

As I beg the prayers and support of my family, friends, co-workers, and the faithful of Pittsburgh and Green Bay alike, I especially seek the intercession of Mary, Mother of the Christ and Mother of the Church. Just as she deeply sought to do God's will, so do I. Just as she received a special promise from God's messenger, so do I go forward trusting in that same promise "Nothing is Impossible with God."

By Tony Staley
Compass Editor

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Auxiliary Bishop David Zubik of Pittsburgh said he plans to get to know the people of his new diocese and to promote spirituality and evangelization after he is installed on Dec. 12 as the 11th Bishop of the Green Bay Diocese.

photo of Bishop David Zubik talking to employees of Diocese of Green Bay
NEW LEADER: Bishop David Zubik was introduced to diocesan employees and the media as the next bishop of Green Bay on Friday morning. (Tony Staley photo)

Bishop Zubik, who on Oct. 10 was named by Pope John Paul, made the comments at separate sessions with diocesan employees and the press shortly after the appointment was announced.

Bishop Zubik succeeds Bishop Robert Banks, who has served nearly 13 years in Green Bay. Bishop Banks had submitted his resignation last Feb. 26 when he turned 75, the mandatory retirement age for bishops.

Bishop Zubik said that in the first six months to a year in Green Bay he plans to be "all over the place, visiting lots of people, getting to know lots of people. One of the gifts I have is being a really good listener and I really want to be able to listen to what people have to say, what they have to tell me, so I can be a good shepherd to the people here."

Although he has worked mainly in diocesan administration since his ordination, Bishop Zubik said he could not do those things "unless I had the freedom on weekends to go to parishes. And I believe that going to parishes on weekends to help out has helped me to become a better administrator.... You need to know that the heart of my life is Christ the Good Shepherd. I approach things in a very pastoral way."

photo of Bishop David Zubik greeting a diocesan employee
MEETING EMPLOYEES: Bishop David Zubik greets Terry Selissen of the Diocese of Green Bay finance office. (Tony Staley photo)

He identified four particular areas he would pursue in the diocese:

• Spirituality, prayer and the importance of the Eucharist.

• Evangelization, particularly in teaching what we believe to people of all ages.

• Respecting all people -- priests and laity -- involved in church ministries.

• Protecting all people in the church.

He also promised that the U.S. bishops' charters and norms on sexual abuse would be enforced in the diocese.

Bishop Zubik has been vicar general and general secretary of the Pittsburgh Diocese since 1996.

He was born Sept. 4, 1949, in Sewickley, Pa., to Stanley and Susan (Raskosky) Zubik. He attended St. Stanislaus Elementary School and St. Veronica High School, both in Ambridge, Pa., before entering St. Paul Seminary, Pittsburgh.

He received an undergraduate degree at Duquesne University in 1971, then earned a degree in theology at St. Mary Seminary and University in Baltimore.

He was ordained a priest on May 3, 1975, by Bishop Vincent Leonard at St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh. He then became a parochial vicar at Sacred Heart Parish, Shadyside. In 1980, he was made vice principal at Quigley Catholic High School in Baden, while serving as chaplain at the Sisters of St. Joseph Motherhouse and to the students at Mount Gallitzen Academy. While holding these positions, he earned a master's in education administration from Duquesne University.

photo of Bishop Banks and diocesan employees listening to new Bishop David Zubik
FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Bishop David Zubik speaks to diocesan employees at Bosco Hall as Bishop Robert Banks looks on. (Tony Staley photo)

In 1987, he was appointed administrative secretary to then-Pittsburgh Bishop Anthony Bevilacqua (now the retired Cardinal Archbishop of Philadelphia).

In 1988, he was appointed administrative secretary and master of ceremonies to Bishop Donald Wuerl where he served until 1991 when he became director of clergy personnel.

In 1995, he was named associate general secretary and chancellor of the Pittsburgh Diocese, becoming vicar general and general secretary on Jan. 1, 1996.

Bishop Zubik was ordained as a bishop on April 6, 1997, at St. Paul Cathedral and was appointed auxiliary bishop to the Pittsburgh Diocese. He also has served as adjunct spiritual director at St. Paul Seminary from 1984 through 1991 and associate spiritual director at St. Vincent Seminary, Latrobe, from 1989 through 1996.

Bishop Zubik is Bishop Wuerl's personal representative to the administrative board of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference, where he is a member of its executive committee. He is also president of the Diocesan Finance Council and of the Catholic Institute of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

photo of Bishop David Zubik holding a news conference
MEETING THE PRESS: Television photojournalists record the news conference with newly appointed Diocese of Green Bay Bishop David Zubik. (Tony Staley photo)

He also serves on the Duquesne University board of directors and its academic affairs committee, the Priest Council, Board of Diocesan Consultors, Priest Personnel Board, Catholic Charities Board and St. Paul Seminary Advisory Board, along with the Board of Trustees of the Catholic Cemeteries Association, Pittsburgh Catholic Publishing Associates, Diocesan Building Commission, Diocesan Pastoral Council, and Chimbote Foundation. He is also chaplain to the Sisters of the Holy Spirit in Ross Township where he resides.

He serves on the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee on Priestly Life and Ministry.

After Bishop Zubik was named Bishop of the Green Bay Diocese, the Diocesan College of Consultors met and elected Bishop Robert Banks as temporary administrator until Bishop Zubik is installed on Dec. 12.


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