Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza dies at 91

Fiorenza celebrated his ninetieth birthday final year with a automotive parade at the Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza Priests Retirement Residence.

HOUSTON — Archbishop Emeritus Joseph A. Fiorenza died Monday. He was 91.

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston posted on its web site that Fiorenza was a “tireless social justice advocate” all through his priesthood.

“Archbishop Fiorenza was known to be a champion of civil rights and a tireless worker in overcoming the presence of racism in our community,” said Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston. “He was also known as a great promoter of genuine renewal in the Church, and in making the teachings of the Second Vatican Council known.”

Fiorenza’s funeral preparations are pending and might be communicated as they’re finalized, based on the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston 

The Houston Dioceses despatched an e-mail to its staff Monday saying:

“It is with deep sorrow that I inform you that after his greater than 68 years as a priest and 21 years as bishop and archbishop of our Archdioceses, Archbishop Fiorenza was known as house to the Lord this morning.

“Though born in Beaumont, Archbishop Fiorenza was a Houstonian through and through, as he worked tirelessly for the good of the local Church of Galveston-Houston. In these last months of his life, Archbishop Fiorenza suffered as his health began to decline.”

St. (*91*) the Evangelist Catholic Church posted the news of his death on Facebook:

“Rest In Peace Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza. Please pray for the repose of the Soul of our dear Archbishop Emeritus.”

RELATED: 4 retired Houston monks, together with Archbishop Fiorenza, check constructive for COVID-19

Commissioner Rodney Ellis  additionally issued an announcement in response to the passing of Archbishop Emeritus Joseph Fiorenza:

“Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza was a voice of conscience and a person of motion who lived by his religion to serve the least of those, empower the powerless, and maintain the highly effective accountable. From his outspoken help of misdemeanor bail reform to his fierce advocacy for civil rights, he led with an ethical compass that at all times pointed towards justice.

“Together, with Rev. Bill Lawson and Rabbi Samuel Karff, Archbishop Fiorenza labored tirelessly throughout faiths to advance equality and combat injustice wherever it was discovered. He was an expensive buddy, a real civil rights chief, and an individual who might be deeply missed by all who knew him.”

About Archbishop Emeritus Joseph Anthony Fiorenza

Source: The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston 

Archbishop Emeritus Joseph Anthony Fiorenza was born Jan. 25, 1931, in Beaumont, Texas. The son of immigrant Italian mother and father, he was the second of 4 youngsters born to Anthony and Grace Fiorenza.

Archbishop Fiorenza graduated from St. Anthony High School in Beaumont on May 29, 1947. He started research for the priesthood in 1947 and was ordained a priest for the then-Diocese of Galveston-Houston on May 29, 1954.

Following ordination, he served as an assistant pastor in Houston for 3 years, after which grew to become the professor of medical ethics at Dominican College and chaplain of St. Joseph Hospital in Houston. From 1959 to 1967, he was the administrator of Sacred Heart Co-Cathedral. He was pastor of a number of church buildings from 1967 to 1973 when he was named chancellor of Galveston-Houston.

St. Pope John Paul II named him the Bishop of San Angelo on Sept. 4, 1979, and he served in that West Texas diocese till 1985 when he was named the Bishop of Galveston-Houston, an archdiocese that has greater than 1.7 million Catholics in 146 parishes throughout 10 counties. He grew to become Galveston-Houston’s first Archbishop on Dec. 29, 2004.

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