National News

Veteran D.C. Monsignor Named New Auxiliary Bishop Under Cardinal Wuerl

By Christopher White, The Tablet’s National Correspondent

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Pope Francis appointed on Friday Monsignor Michael William Fisher as a new auxiliary bishop to the Archdiocese of Washington.

Monsignor Fisher, who is 60 years old, has served as Episcopal Vicar for Clergy and Secretary for Ministerial Leadership for the archdiocese since 2006.

Upon news of the announcement, Cardinal Donald Wuerl released a statement expressing gratitude to Pope Francis for the appointment.

“Monsignor Fisher brings to this ministry recognized talent and demonstrated ability. In particular, his concern for his brother priests, dedication to priestly ministry and his kind yet directive leadership will be gifts to this local Church as he serves in this new capacity,” said Cardinal Wuerl.

“Personally I look forward to continuing to work closely with our new auxiliary bishop, who, over the years, has made significant contributions to the pastoral life of this archdiocese,” said Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl. Cardinal Wuerl celebrated Mass dedicating the Trinity Dome Mosaic at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington last December. (Photo:Catholic News Service/Tyler Orsburn) 

“Personally I look forward to continuing to work closely with our new auxiliary bishop, who, over the years, has made significant contributions to the pastoral life of this archdiocese,” he added.

A native of Baltimore, Monsignor Fisher received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Accounting at the University of Maryland in 1984, and following two years of professional work as a comptroller, entered Mount Saint Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland in 1986.

He has previously said that “The Lord was always there,” in discerning whether to pursue a later vocation to the priesthood.

Cardinal James A. Hickey ordained him a priest for the Archdiocese of Washington on June 23, 1990.

After serving various pastoral assignments, in 2005, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick named Monsignor Fisher Vicar General for the Apostolates, where he was responsible for overseeing the education, ethnic ministries, social justice and service, parish life and youth ministry programs of the Archdiocese.

In 2005, he was given the title of “monsignor” by Pope John Paul II just two days before his death.

While Monsignor Fisher’s father was a native of Baltimore, his mother was a native Washingtonian. Given those divided loyalties, Monsignor Fisher’s official biography released by the Archdiocese of Washington, notes that “Msgr. Fisher is a life-long Baltimore Orioles fan, but he will root for the Washington Nationals …when they don’t play the O’s!.”

Share this article with a friend.