December 21, 2021 His Holiness Pope Francis has named the Reverend Jeffrey J. Walsh, priest of the Diocese of Scranton, Pennsylvania, as the sixth bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord. The announcement was made today by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, in Washington, D.C.
Bishop-elect Walsh, 56, is a priest of the Diocese of Scranton and currently serves as pastor of Saint Rose of Lima Parish, Carbondale, and Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish, Carbondale. Bishop-elect Walsh’s episcopal ordination and installation as sixth bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord has been set for March 4, 2022, at 2 p.m. in St. Mary Cathedral, Gaylord.
As sixth bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord, Bishop-elect Walsh succeeds the Most Reverend Steven J. Raica, J.C.D., D.D. Bishop Raica served as shepherd of the diocese from August 28, 2014 until June 23, 2020, at which time he was installed as bishop of the Diocese of Birmingham in Alabama. Since June 2020, while the diocese was a vacant see, Bishop Walter A. Hurley has served as
Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Gaylord.
“With gratitude to our Holy Father Pope Francis, and joy in the Lord, I am eager to begin a new chapter in my life of discipleship among the good people of the Diocese of Gaylord!” said Bishop-elect Walsh. “I am also most grateful to God for 27 years of priestly ministry in the Diocese of Scranton. I have been inspired and challenged to grow in faith through various diocesan assignments and will forever prayerfully remember all the lay faithful, religious, deacons, priests and bishops with whom and for whom I have served.
“In particular, I would like to acknowledge the kind support of Bishop Joseph C. Bambera. The most important act of gratitude I can offer is for my parents, Jerome and Nancy (Doud) Walsh. They, as well as my deceased grandparents, have been the most significant formators of my life. I have been blessed with a solid, but by no means ‘perfect,’ family that also includes my two brothers, two nieces, one nephew, aunts and uncles and many close first cousins. Looking forward, I hope to bring a missionary spirit to my episcopal ministry under the mantle of Divine Providence. From ‘Penn’s Woods’ to the land of ‘Great Lakes,” I trust God’s loving plan.” Bishop-elect Walsh was born on November 29, 1965. The son of Jerome and Nancy Walsh, he is a native of Scranton, Pa., and is a graduate of Scranton Central High School. He is one of three children, with brothers James and Joseph Walsh. He graduated from the University of Scranton in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in Health and Human Resources. He went on to complete his priestly studies at Mount St. Mary’s