WASHINGTON (November 11, 1998)--Pope John Paul II has named Bishop Anthony J. O'Connell of Knoxville, Tennessee, to be Bishop of Palm Beach, Florida.
Bishop O'Connell, 60, succeeds Bishop J. Keith Symons who resigned June 2. Bishop Robert N. Lynch of St. Petersburg has been serving as Apostolic Administrator of Palm Beach.
Archbishop Agostino Cacciavillan, Apostolic Pro-Nuncio to the United States, announced the appointment.
Anthony Joseph O'Connell was born in Lisheen, County Clare, Ireland, on May 10, 1938. He studied at Mount St. Joseph College in Cork and at Mungret College in Limerick, Ireland. Emigrating to the United States at age 20, he entered Kenrick Seminary in St. Louis.
On March 30, 1963, he was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri.
Following ordination, he was assigned as Director of Students at St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary in Hannibal, MO. He was named Spiritual Director in 1968 and appointed Rector in 1970.
Bishop O'Connell served as Director of Vocations for the Diocese of Jefferson City from 1969 to 1988. He was a member of the Diocesan Commission for Personnel and President of the Presbyteral Council.
He was serving as Rector of St. Thomas Aquinas when he was named first Bishop of the newly created Diocese of Knoxville on June 7, 1988.
The Diocese of Palm Beach, established in 1984, comprises the counties of Palm Beach, Martin, Indian River, Okeechobee and St. Lucie in the State of Florida. It has a Catholic population of 205,000 in a total population of 1.2 million.