Fr. Peter Smith
Fr. Peter Smith

Archbishop Alexander Sample has appointed Father Peter Smith as Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia. Father Smith will succeed Msgr. Dennis O'Donovan, who is retiring at the end of June.

Father Smith was born in 1958 in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. He earned a bachelor's degree in Commerce in Business Administration and Marketing in 1981 from the University of Natal in Pietermaritzburg. He earned a law degree from the University of Natal Law School in 1983. After entering the seminary in 1996, he earned a master's degree in Theology in 2000 and a Master of Divinity degree in 2001, both from Mount Angel Seminary.

Father Smith was ordained a priest by Archbishop John Vlazny on June 9, 2001 at St. Mary's Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Father Smith is a member of the Brotherhood of the People of Praise. He served as parochial vicar at Our Lady of the Lake Parish, Lake Oswego, and then he studied at the Catholic University of America, earning a Licentiate degree in Canon Law (J.C.L.) He has served as pastor at St. Rose of Lima Parish in Portland since July 2006.

Msgr. O'Donovan was appointed Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia in 2000 by Archbishop John Vlazny. He was born in Omaha, Neb. He earned a bachelor's degree in Philosophy at Conception Seminary in 1965, and studied theology at St. Meinrad School of Theology. He also earned a master's degree in English from Pittsburg State University in 1973.

Msgr. O'Donovan was ordained a priest for Mount Michael Abbey of the Order of St. Benedict in 1969. He moved to the Archdiocese of Portland in 1979, and served in parishes in Albany, Forest Grove, Beaverton and Redland before being appointed Vicar General in August 2000.