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  September 21, 2012   •   Oakland, CA

New administrator named for Oakland

Most Rev. Alexander Brunett

Most Rev. Alexander Brunett, archbishop emeritus of the Archdiocese of Seattle, was named by Pope Benedict XVI as apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Oakland, effective Oct. 4.

Archbishop Brunett will serve in the interim after Archbishop-designate Salvatore J. Cordileone begins his new post as the archbishop of San Francisco on Oct. 4 and before the appointment of his successor.

“Part of my job is to prepare (the diocese) for another bishop. I’m not here forever,” quipped Archbishop Brunett, as he greeted and made brief remarks to members of the chancery staff on Sept. 21 during a brief visit to the diocese.

Archbishop Brunett, a native of Detroit, Michigan, was ordained to the priesthood in 1958 in Rome. After a number of assignments in the Detroit area, Pope John Paul II appointed him as bishop of the Diocese of Helena, Montana, in 1994. He was named archbishop of Seattle in 1997, and remained in that post until he retired in 2010, at the mandatory retirement age of 75.

Though it was previously announced that Archbishop-designate Cordileone would remain apostolic administrator of the Oakland diocese even after his installation as archbishop of San Francisco, he explained in a memo to employees the appointment was made “in order to relieve me of the burden of the pastoral governance of two dioceses at the same time as I assume leadership in San Francisco.” He also expressed his gratitude to Archbishop Brunett for “the enthusiasm with which he accepted this appointment. He has a wealth of experience, and I am confident that this will benefit the diocese during this period of transition,” he added.

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