Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302

Ten receive pastoral assignments in Diocese of Spokane

the Inland Register

(From the May 1, 2003 edition of the Inland Register)

Ten pastoral assignments effecting 19 parishes of the Spokane Diocese have been announced by Bishop Skylstad.

Most of the assignments are effective July 1, 2003.

Father Thomas Connolly, presently parochial vicar of St. Mary Parish, Spokane, is the new pastor of the parishes in Dayton, Pomeroy and Waitsburg.

Father Steven Dublinski, pastor of St. Mary Parish in Spokane Valley and Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia of the Spokane Diocese, has been named pastor of four parishes: in Oakesdale, Rosalia, St. John, and Tekoa. He continues his diocesan administrative duties as well.

Father Joachim Hiên, pastor of St. Charles Parish, Spokane, will become pastor of St. Anthony Parish, Spokane.

Father Fernando Maldonado has been on leave from the diocese. He returns to ministry as parochial vicar of Sacred Heart Parish, Othello, an appointment that was effective May 1, 2003.

Father Bonaventure Obisike, administrator of the parishes in Dayton and Waitsburg and parochial vicar of St. Francis of Assisi and St. Patrick parishes in Walla Walla, is the new pastor of the parishes in Lind, Ritzville, Sprague and Washtucna.

Father Mark Pautler, part of the parish team of St. Joseph Parish, Spokane, and Judicial Vicar for the Diocese of Spokane, will become pastor of Sacred Heart Parish, Spokane.

Father John Rompa, who officially retired in 1995, returns to parish ministry as pastor of St. Ann Parish, Spokane.

Msgr. John Steiner, co-Vicar General of the diocese, returns from sabbatical to become pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley.

Deacon Joseph Sullivan will be ordained to the priesthood on May 30. His first priestly assignment will be as parochial vicar of St. Francis of Assisi and St. Patrick parishes in Walla Walla.

Father Eugene Tracy is now pastor of St. Anthony Parish, Spokane. He will move in July to St. Charles Parish, effectively trading places with Father Hiên.

Father Connolly was ordained June 23, 2000. Since ordination he has served as parochial vicar of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley.

He is a native of Rhode Island. He holds a master’s degree in theater direction and worked for many years as a chief of recreation for the United States Army. He studied at Bishop White Seminary in Spokane and completed his priestly formation at North American College, Vatican City.

Father Dublinski has been Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia of the Spokane Diocese since July 1, 2002.

He was ordained June 29, 1985, after studies at Bishop White Seminary and North American College, Vatican City.

He first served as associate pastor of St. John Vianney Parish, Spokane, and then St. Charles Parish, Spokane. Months after his assignment to St. Charles he became pastoral administrator, and then pastor, of that parish, where he stayed until 1997, when he moved to St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley.

Father Hiên is a native of Vietnam. He was ordained there Dec. 22, 1974.

He first served the Spokane Diocese as associate pastor of St. Charles Parish, Spokane, in 1977. The next year he became spiritual director of Bishop White Seminary.

In 1979 he was named assistant pastor of St. Patrick Parish, Spokane, where he stayed until 1984, when he was named associate pastor of St. Thomas More Parish, Spokane.

In 1986 he became pastor of the parishes in Tekoa and Rockford.

That was followed in 1994 with full-time ministry with the Association of Vietnamese Clergy and Religious in the United States and the Federation of Vietnamese Catholics, while staying in residence at St. Charles. He became that parish’s pastor in 1997.

Father Maldonado, ordained June 29, 1999, was parochial vicar of St. Patrick Parish, Walla Walla, prior to his appointment as pastor of the parishes in Dayton, Pomeroy and Waitsburg in 2000.

He studied at Bishop White Seminary and completed theology studies at St. Paul Seminary, St. Paul, Minn.

A native of Mexico, Father Maldonado spent three years as a member of the Sons of the Holy Family, a Religious order, in Spain before beginning his studies for the Spokane Diocese.

Father Obisike was ordained for the Spokane Diocese on May 25, 2001.

He was first assigned as parochial vicar of St. Francis of Assisi and St. Patrick parishes in Walla Walla. Added to those responsibilities was the role of administrator of the parishes in Dayton and Waitsburg, in July 2002.

Father Obisike comes to the Spokane Diocese from Nigeria. He holds advanced degrees in philosophy, theology and religious studies, and completed priestly formation at St. Paul Seminary, St. Paul, Minn.

Father Pautler has been Judicial Vicar and Chancellor of the Spokane Diocese since 1987. Father Pautler was ordained Aug. 3, 1974, after studies at Bishop White Seminary and The American College in Louvain, Belgium.

He completed graduate studies at The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., in 1985.

He has been associate pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley, and Our Lady of Fatima Parish, Spokane. In 1978 he was named assistant director of Immaculate Heart Retreat Center.

In 1984 he was assigned to the pastoral team of St. Joseph Parish, Spokane. He returned to that assignment after completing his work at The Catholic University.

Father Rompa was ordained May 19, 1951.

He grew up in Holland and came to the United States after World War II. He studied at St. Edward Seminary, Kenmore, Wash., before ordination.

He was an assistant pastor at St. Anthony Parish, Spokane; St. Mary of the Rosary, Chewelah; and St. Patrick, Walla Walla, before he was given “care of the souls” of St. Joseph, LaCrosse.

In 1960 he began missionary work in Guatemala, where he stayed for six years.

He returned to the diocese to become pastor of St. Rose of Lima Parish, Cheney.

He later served as pastor of Immaculate Conception, Daven-port; Holy Ghost and St. Anthony, Spokane; St. Patrick, Walla Walla; St. Charles, Spokane; and St. Anne, Medical Lake, before his retirement in 1995.

Msgr. Steiner was ordained April 12, 1969.

He studied at Bishop White Seminary when it was still a high school seminary, then transferred to St. Edward Seminary, Kenmore, for the rest of high school as well as college. His theology studies were at St. Thomas Seminary, Kenmore.

He also holds a master’s degree in education from Gonzaga University and a master’s degree in liturgy from the University of Notre Dame.

Msgr. Steiner taught at Mater Cleri Seminary, Colbert, as a new priest.

He was associate pastor of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes in Spokane before beginning his liturgy studies at Notre Dame. He returned to the diocese to become Director of Liturgy in 1976, and in 1977 was named Chancellor.

In 1980 he became pastor of Our Lady of Fatima Parish, Spokane; in 1985, pastor of St. John Vianney Parish, Spokane.

He was named Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia in 1987. He retains the title of co-Moderator of the Curia.

He was pastor of St. Thomas More Parish, Spokane, from 1992-2002, when he began his sabbatical year at The American College in Louvain, Belgium.

He was invested as a monsignor in 1997.

Deacon Sullivan will be ordained to the priesthood Friday, May 30, by Bishop Skylstad at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes in Spokane.

He studied at Bishop White Seminary and completed theology at Mount Angel Seminary, St. Benedict, Ore.

He comes to the Spokane Diocese from Georgia. He holds a bachelor’s degree in geology from Western Georgia College and worked as a geologist for a number of years before discerning his vocation to the priesthood.

Father Tracy was ordained Sept. 6, 1991.

He has been pastor of St. Anthony Parish, Spokane, since 2001.

He is a certified public accountant, and owned and operated his own accounting firm for a number of years before beginning his priestly formation.

He studied theology at The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.

His first assignment as a priest was parochial vicar of St. Francis Xavier Parish, Spokane.

From there he became pastor of the parishes in Connell and Eltopia, before beginning six years of ministry as pastor of St. Peter Parish, Spokane.


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