Home | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising | El Centinela
Catholic Sentinel | Portland, OR Wednesday, May 4, 2016
CYO Football 2015 2015 Priest Reassignments, Archdiocese of Portland Cardinal Francis George dies Mothering with faith Sisters of the Holy Names, 2015 Live Nativity at St. John the Baptist 2014 Fall CYO results Catholic Charities Donor Lunch 2014 Year of Consecrated Life opening Mass Holy Spirit Sisters Jubilee 2014 Seaside youth conference Mount Angel 125th Northwest Hub Furlow at papal Mass 2014 Rosary Bowl NW Brother André 2014 Fall 40 Days for Life 2014 Inauguration of Fr. Mark Poorman Coffee shop at abbey First day of school, 2014 Regis High School 50th anniversary 2014 Crooked Finger Pilgrimage Mass with migrant farm workers Maronite Ordination Consecration to "Immaculate Heart of Our Lady of Fatima" CYO track Southern Oregon Evangelization 2014 Priest Ordination Christ the King youth 2014 priest reassignments Our Lady of Lavang Confirmation, 2014 Memorial Day 2014 2014 Transitional deacon ordination Padre Foster Granados visits Albany Bishop Smith ordination Canonization of Pope John Paul II, Pope John XXIII Bishop Peter Smith 2014 Easter Vigil 2014 Walk of Cross 2014 Chrism Mass CYO basketball 2014 St. Patrick of the Forest 150th Catholic Charities Celebration of Hope, 2014 Boys2Men Archbishop visits Oregon State Penitentiary 40 Day Vigil for Life, 2014 Pope Francis creates new cardinals St. Henry shelter 2014 CYO swimming Funeral of Fr. George Wolf Travel on a budget Lunar New Year, 2014 Tech in Catholic schools 2014 Right to Life Rally Archbishop visits Santiam Prison First Mass in Oregon Milwaukie Posada St. Francis, Sherwood, Toy Drive Central Catholic football Typhoon Haiyan Deacon Ordination/ Kresbach, Schmitt A Catholic fisherman St. Cecilia Centennial Southern Oregon Welcome Mass Shepherd of the Valley, Central Point, dedication Grotto Anniversary 2013 Champions of Faith Dinner Gardenripe farms Coleman hop farm Corvallis Year of Faith Archbishop Howard at St. Rose Hitchhiking priests Franciscan Spiritual Center Sacred Heart, Medford Migrant Mass Tanzanians' jubilee World Youth Day 2013 2013 Blessing of the Animals 2013 Freedom Mass Albany school closure Fabric art Megan graduates from Catholic school St. Vincent de Paul Hillsboro 2013 Deacon ordination Sister Theresa Lamkin St. Helen Mission, Brownsville Marist Brainiacs St. Mary, Eugene St. Francis eighth graders Ascension confirmation 2013 Pastoral Ministry Conference St. Joseph Salem — Year of Faith Archbishop Sample's Installation Mass 2013 Archbishop Sample Chrism Mass 2013 2013 Young Catholics Pope Francis inauguration Celebration of Hope Vlazny Farewell Mass Archbishop Vlazny Farewell St. Paul Church in St. Paul Valley Catholic Green Building Rite of Election 2013 Water summit 2013 Lunar New Year Alveda King in Eugene New Monsignors, 2013 2013 Right to Life Rally MLK Mass, 2013 St. Henry, Gresham, Centennial Jesuit High drama School uniforms Friar in the mall Holy Trinity food ministry January Book Covers St. Andre Bessette food Year of Faith Mass Nestucca Sanctuary Hillsboro Choirs Father Betschart installation Salem Religious Freedom Rally Year of Faith Vespers, Awards Roy's Catholic School Adelante Mujeres 10th anniversary New Blanchet House Missionaries of Holy Spirit Priest, religious photos Providence Nursing Schools Pioneros Fortnight for Freedom Mark Bentz Deacon Ordination OLL School Walk Through Gaga over science St. Philip Neri Centennial Ordination of Bishop Cary SVDP, Grants Pass Holy Cross School centennial Confirmation - Mount Angel Holy Land Pilgrimage Blanchet Watershed Chrism Mass, 2012 Bishop-designate Cary Pope in Cuba, 2012 SSMO 125th Jubilee Mass Pope Benedict in Mexico 2012 Catholic Charities Celebration 2012 Madeleine Mardi Gras Centennial Rally for Life, 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Mass 2012 Day Laborers-Guadalupe Guadalupe 2011 Christ the King, Milwaukie, 50th Sesame Doughnuts Central Catholic Volleyball St. Peter Centennial Deacon Ordination, October 2011 St. Agatha Centennial Rosary Bowl 2011 St. Wenceslaus, Scappoose, Centennial Filipino celebration Polish Festival 2011 Holy War Football 2011 World Youth Day 2011 Sun Gold Farm Our Lady of Victory's New Church Freedom Mass 2011 St. Mary Church Steeple Removal Priest reassignments, 2011 Old Catholic Buildings Paige Rice, St. Mary's runner Graduation 2011 Easter vigils 2011 Pastoral Ministry Conference Basketball Holy War 2011 Search for Peace 2011

Pacifica Senior Living - Calaroga Terrace

Home : News : Local
John Vlazny grew up on Chicago's south side
Bill Britt

By Bill Britt

For the Sentinel

CHICAGO - John Vlazny spent his formative years here - growing up, then in the priesthood, then as auxiliary bishop under the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin.

He grew up in a working-class neighborhood on this city's south side. He served as pastor at St. Aloysius Parish here, whose Spanish-speaking members came mostly from Puerto Rico, as well as Mexico and Guatemala. He served as rector of Niles College Seminary, 1981-83.

When he was chosen to be auxiliary bishop of Chicago in 1983, two of his three fellow ordinands were Bishop Wilton Gregory, the first African-American auxiliary bishop here, and Bishop Placido Rodriguez, the first Hispanic auxiliary bishop. Bishop Vlazny served as episcopal vicar for Lake County and Northwestern Suburban Cook County.

While serving as episcopal vicar, he worked closely with the Office of the Hispanic Apostolate. He participated in several caucuses that addressed the variety of needs in ministering to Hispanics in the archdiocese.

'We need to have more clearly defined and identifiable places in Lake County where Hispanics know they can go for all their ministerial needs,' Bishop Vlazny told the New World, the newspaper of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

'Because we are so understaffed in terms of ordained priests able to serve Hispanics, we also have to develop lay ministers at all parishes who can rely on the ordained ministers at nearby 'central parishes' for assistance.'

When Pope John Paul appointed Bishop Vlazny to head the diocese of Winona, Minn., in 1987, Cardinal Bernardin wrote of the auxiliary bishop he had selected only a few years before.

'As parish priest, seminary rector and, for the past three and a half years, episcopal vicar, he has touched the lives of thousands of people. I am particularly grateful for all he has done to assist me with my own ministry as the bishop of this local church. His understanding, cooperation, and friendship have been a treasured gift to me personally. We will all miss him greatly.'

The sentiment was mutual: 'My three and one-half years as auxiliary bishop of Joseph Cardinal Bernardin have been a privileged and grace-filled opportunity. Nobody pastors better than Chicago's Brother Joseph!' Bishop Vlazny wrote.

As he begins the next stage of his ministry, moving from Winona to Portland, Archbishop Vlazny receives kind words from another Chicago native who was Archbishop of Portland. 'It is a source of great personal satisfaction and an occasion of joy for Chicago and Portland that the Holy Father has appointed Bishop John Vlazny of Winona, Minn., to succeed me as Archbishop of Portland,' wrote Archbishop Francis George, who became Archbishop of Chicago last spring.

'Bishop Vlazny, a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago, served marvelously here as a pastor, seminary rector, and auxiliary bishop. His deep spirituality, fluency in Spanish, and theological acumen will be of great service to the Archdiocese of Portland and to all the people of Western Oregon.'

Retired Chicago Auxiliary Bishop Timothy Lyne, who was ordained the same December day in 1961 as Bishop Vlazny, said, 'We go back a long way. You're getting an outstanding man. He's a very bright man. I think you will find him a very kind and understanding man.'

John George Vlazny was born Feb. 22, 1937, in Chicago and attended St. Gall elementary school.

He later studied at Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago and in 1958 received a bachelor of arts degree at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein, Ill.

He continued his studies at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, earning a bachelor's degree in theology in 1960 and a theology licentiate in 1962. Later, he also earned master's degrees in the classics from the University of Michigan and in education from Loyola University in Chicago.

While in Chicago, he was on the faculty of Quigley Preparatory North, which later merged into Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary, during this same period. From 1969 to 1979, he was dean of studies at Quigley North.

He was president of Chicago's Presbyteral Senate, 1976-77. He also was a diocesan consultor and member of the Diocesan Clergy Personnel Board.

When he left his post as rector of Niles College Seminary in 1983 to become auxiliary bishop of Chicago, students were noticeably upset by the news.

'He gave me a different perspective of priesthood,' a seminarian said at the time. 'Before I had just seen priests in the parish. But now I also see priests as administrators and leaders of a larger community, as people who are more involved in decision making.'

Father Robert McLaughlin, pastor of Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago, succeeded him as rector of the seminary.

'John Vlazny is a hardworking, competent man with tremendous integrity,' Father McLaughlin says. 'He is a man who follows his conviction even if it goes against the grain.

'John's style is that of a highly intelligent man who loves the church and Christ. We have been friends for years and I know that friendship will continue. I know the people of Portland will be touched by this wonderful man.'

Upon his consecration as auxiliary bishop in Chicago, Bishop Vlazny wrote in the New World that 'care, concern and effective leadership' are essential components for his new position.

'The commitment to continued spiritual growth and renewal will be a clearly perceived and credible priority in an increasing number of our parish families,' he wrote. 'Every good pastor, particularly bishops, will need to give evident witness to this value in his personal life.'

Despite his administrative abilities, he's able to view his post with a touch of irony: 'Being a bishop is like being a grandparent,' he said.

'When you come into a parish for a confirmation or other liturgical function, it is fun and everyone is nice to you, and then you go away and leave the pastor with all the problems.'

Advanced Search

Mary Jo Tully ~ The Path to Resurrection

News | Viewpoints | Faith & Spirituality | Parish and School Life | Entertainment | Obituaries | Find Churches and Schools | About Us | Subscriptions | Advertising
E-Newsletter | RSS Feeds

© 2016 Catholic Sentinel, a service of Oregon Catholic Press

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved