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

Bishop’s Secretary for Diocesan Business Affairs retires

Story and photo by Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor, Inland Register

(From the June 9, 2011 edition of the Inland Register)

Bishop Blase Cupich thanks Deacon Mike Miller for his service to the church as Bishop’s Secretary for Diocesan Business Affairs. Deacon Miller retires on June 30. At left, Development Director Chris Smith holds a poster created for Deacon Miller, devoted to the deacon’s love of bicycling. (IR photo)

Deacon Mike Miller, the Bishop’s Secretary for Diocesan Business Affairs for over 10 years, retires as of June 30 this year.

An open house at the Catholic Pastoral Center in Spokane on May 24 brought together co-workers, friends, and family.

Deacon Miller came to the diocese in 2001 after a lifetime spent in various corporate capacities.

In an Inland Register interview when he was first hired, he talked about how, over the course of about four years, he had come to discern “a strong feeling that God was calling me to leave the business world and devote the last 10 years of my work life to him, in thanksgiving for all the good things he’d blessed us with, and they are many.”

His service to the church eventually included entering the diocese’s Deacon Formation Program. He was ordained June 24, 2005, and has since ministered in St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley.

When he was hired, he came to discover that the diocese’s business operations were “complex.”

In time, however, that complexity came to include becoming one of the key leaders in the diocese’s Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Reorganization.

When the diocese’s Plan of Reorganization was approved, Bishop William Skylstad wrote of his gratitude for the expertise and hard work of so many individuals. Deacon Miller, he said, was one of those who had “borne the brunt of a tremendous amount of work, far more than normally would be expected,” whose “wisdom and expertise are something for which all of us in the diocese need to be grateful.”

Although the primary charism of the diaconate is service, that ideal also guided his life as a corporate executive, a value he brought with him to his work for the diocese. Even before he began ministering professionally in the diocese, he was an active parishioner, serving on the Finance Council of St. Peter Parish and All Saints School’s Finance Board.

He has long been involved with Spokane’s L’Arche community, which creates a Gospel-based community living situation for developmentally delayed adults.

In a letter he wrote applying for the diocesan business position, he said, “I believe that everything I have in life is a gift from God, a blessing to be shared with others. Our faith cannot be left at the church door after Mass on Sunday.”

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