Friday, December 12, 2008

Winona Catholics welcome Bishop John Quinn

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The Diocese of Winona’s newest bishop received a warm welcome Thursday.

Hundreds of residents and more than 100 priests packed into Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Winona to welcome Bishop John Quinn as the diocese’s coadjutor bishop. Dozens of religious leaders, including Archbishop John Nienstedt of St. Paul and Minneapolis and Cardinals Adam Maida and Edmund Szoka of Detroit, also were on hand. During the ceremony, Quinn promised to serve as a leader, in both word and example.
Bishop John Quinn speaks Thursday during a welcome mass at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Winona. Quinn has been named coadjutor and eighth bishop of the Diocese of Winona.

Quinn, 62, will serve as coadjutor bishop until Bishop Bernard Harrington’s resignation is formally accepted by the Vatican, at which time he will become the sole diocesan bishop. Harrington submitted his resignation in September prior to his 75th birthday — the Vatican’s mandatory retirement age for bishops — but he will serve as bishop for at least six more months until his resignation is accepted, he said Wednesday. Harrington received a standing ovation when Quinn thanked him near the end of the ceremony.

Quinn comes to Winona from the Archdiocese of Detroit, and he talked about the adjustments he will have to make, including the shift to a colder climate, which Harrington joked about early in the ceremony.

“When snow comes in December, it stays until March,” Harrington said. “There’s no slush, no melting ... just good, healthy, cold weather.”

Quinn asked the people of the diocese to have patience with him as he adjusts. He also repeatedly talked about serving as a model for the diocese while giving the Mass’ homily.

“I promise to preach a gospel of life and not be afraid to stand up for the gospel in the world,” he said.

The new bishop also spoke of his eagerness to start this new assignment n and embrace the new diocese he will soon lead.

“I come to you with a heart that is ready,” Quinn said. Winona Daily News
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