Pope Benedict Names New Archbishop for Detroit

Cardinal Maida will Introduce Archbishop-elect Vigneron at News Conference

Jan 5, 2009

Pope Benedict XVI has named Bishop Allen Henry Vigneron (pronounced Vin-Yur-On), 60, of the Diocese of Oakland, California, as the new Archbishop of Detroit. Installation of the new archbishop has been scheduled for 2 p.m. on Wednesday, January 28, at Detroit's Blessed Sacrament Cathedral.

As required by Church law, Cardinal Maida submitted his resignation to the Holy Father when he turned 75, in March of 2005. Pope Benedict then invited Cardinal Maida to continue as Archbishop of Detroit. Cardinal Maida's resignation has now been accepted; he will, however, serve as apostolic administrator of the archdiocese during this month's transition.


Cardinal Adam Maida will introduce his successor, Archbishop-elect Allen Vigneron


Cardinal Adam Maida and Archbishop-elect Allen Vigneron


Monday, January 5, at 10 a.m.


Sacred Heart Major Seminary, 2701 Chicago Boulevard at Linwood, Detroit


Ned McGrath, infodesk@aod.org / (313) 237-5943


Archbishop-elect Vigneron was born in Mount Clemens and grew up in Immaculate Conception Parish, Anchorville (Ira Township). He attended Immaculate Conception Grade School before going on to Detroit's Sacred Heart Seminary High School and College. Later, he studied at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

Prior to being named Bishop of Oakland, California, in 2003, Archbishop-elect Vigneron was an auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Detroit. His background includes assignments as rector/president of Sacred Heart Major Seminary, work in the Administrative Section of the Vatican Secretariat of State, and service as associate pastor at Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish, Harper Woods.

In his remarks, Archbishop-elect Vigneron expressed his gratitude to Pope Benedict, acknowledged Cardinal Maida's welcome home, and addressed southeast Michigan's economic struggle. "I recognize that this challenge for our civic community is – as all societal problems are – a pastoral challenge as well. To that challenge," he said, "I want to bring all the riches of grace which the Holy Spirit has bestowed on the Church."

As Archbishop of Detroit, Archbishop-elect Vigneron will be the chief shepherd of 1.4 million Catholics who reside in Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Lapeer, and St. Clair Counties. Assisting him in his duties will be Auxiliary Bishops Daniel Flores and Francis Reiss and retired Auxiliary Bishops Moses Anderson, SSE, and Thomas Gumbleton.