USCCB News Release
June 3, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Pope Accepts Resignation of Omaha Archbishop, Appoints Bishop Lucas of Springfield, Illinois, as Successorn
WASHINGTON—Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of Archbishop Elden F. Curtiss, 76, from the pastoral governance of the Archdiocese of Omaha, Nebraska, and has named as his successor Bishop George J. Lucas, 59, up until now Bishop of Springfield in Illinois.
The announcement was made June 3 in Washington by the apostolic nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Pietro Sambi.
George Lucas was born in St. Louis on June 12, 1949. He completed his theological studies at the major seminary of St. Louis and earned a Master's degree in history from the University of St. Louis. He was ordained a priest on May 24, 1975.
Following ordination, Father Lucas held pastoral assignments in the Archdiocese of St. Louis. He served from 1981 to 1990 as instructor and spiritual director of St. Louis Preparatory Seminary.
From 1990 to 1994 he was chancellor of the Archdiocese of St. Louis and secretary to Archbishop John May. He was named ‘Honorary Prelate of His Holiness,’ with the title of monsignor, September 5, 1994, by Pope John Paul II and was named rector of Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in 1995.
Msgr. Lucas was appointed Bishop of Springfield, Illinois, on October 19, 1999, and ordained December 14, 1999.
Archbishop-designate Lucas is a member of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People and the USCCB’s Subcommittee on the Catechism. He is also an alternate representing Region VII on the bishops’ Administrative Committee.
Elden Francis Curtiss was born June 16, 1932, in Baker, Oregon. He was appointed Archbishop of Omaha on May 4, 1993. Prior to that, he was Bishop of Helena, Montana, 1976-1993.
Archbishop Curtiss was ordained a priest May 24, 1958. He holds a Master of Divinity degree from St. Edward’s Seminary in Kenmore, Washington, and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Portland.