New Episcopal Appointment for St. Catharines

Friday, November 09 2001

(Ottawa — CCCB) His Holiness Pope John Paul II has accepted the resignation of Most Rev. John A. O’Mara as Bishop of St. Catharines and appointed Bishop James Matthew Wingle of Yarmouth as the new Bishop of St. Catharines. Bishop O’Mara had submitted his resignation having reached the age of retirement as required by canon law.

Most Rev. John A.O’Mara — Most Rev. James Wingle

Bishop Wingle was born in Pembroke, Ontario, in 1946, ordained to the priesthood in 1977 and named Bishop of Yarmouth in 1993.  After studying theology at the University of St. Michael’s College and at St. Augustine’s Seminary in Toronto, he obtained a licenciate in theology from the Academia Alphonsiana in Rome.

Bishop Wingle is currently a member of the Episcopal Advisory Board for World Youth Day 2002 and of the Episcopal Commission for Christian Unity. He has previously served on the Episcopal Commission for Canon Law / Inter-Rite.

Bishop O’Mara was born in Buffalo, New York, on November 17, 1924, ordained to the priesthood in Toronto in 1951, and named Bishop of Thunder Bay in 1976 where he served until becoming Bishop of St. Catharines in 1994.

Bishop O’Mara has served on the CCCB Permanent Council and many of the Conference’s episcopal commissions including Christian Education, Social Affairs, Social Communications and the Evangelization of Peoples.

The Diocese of St. Catharines has a Catholic population of 145,850 and is served by 63 diocesan priests, 33 religious order priests, one permanent deacon, and 71 religious in 48 parishes and missions.