Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 1453, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Bishop Cupich names new Vicars General and Director of Continuing Education for Priests

by Eric Meisfjord, Editor, Inland Register

(From the September 18, 2014 edition of the Inland Register)

After seeking the advice of the Diocesan Consultors, Bishop Blase J. Cupich has made the following appointments, effective Sept. 1, 2014:

Vicar General for External Matters

• Father Patrick Kerst
(while retaining his position as pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley, and St. Joseph Parish, Rockford)

Vicar General for Internal Matters

• Father Michael Savelesky
(while retaining his position as Moderator of the Curia and Director of Deacon Formation, and pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, St. John, and Holy Rosary Parish, Rosalia, and Pastoral Administrator of St. Rose of Lima Parish, Cheney)

Director of Continuing Education for Priests

• Father Timothy Hays
(while retaining his position as pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Colbert)

– Announced at the Catholic Pastoral Center Sept. 4, 2014


Effective Sept. 1, Bishop Blase Cupich has appointed Father Michael Savelesky Vicar General for Internal Matters, Father Patrick Kerst as Vicar General for External Matters, and Father Timothy Hays as Director of Continuing Education for Priests.

Fathers Kerst and Savelesky replace Father Steven Dublinski, who has served the diocese as Vicar General for the last 12 years. Father Dublinski continues his ministry as pastor of St. Augustine Parish, Spokane.

Bishop Blase Cupich praised Father Dublinski’s service to the diocese as Vicar General for over a decade.

“Father Dublinski came to me a year ago, asking to step down from his responsibilities as Vicar General. I have accepted his resignation. I’m grateful that he gave me time to reorganize this important office.

“Father Dublinski served the diocese as Vicar General with great wisdom and charity during very difficult and demanding times. I take this occasion to thank Father Dublinski for his 12 years as Vicar General and nearly 30 years as a priest. He is a valued member of our presbyterate and is well-respected for his pastoral sensitivity. I look forward to his continued ministry at St. Augustine Parish.”

The Vicar General assists the bishop of the diocese and represents him in those matters defined in his appointment.

Both of the new Vicars General will retain most of their current responsibilities.

Father Kerst is pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley, and St. Joseph Parish, Rockford, and serves as a member of the steering committee of the diocese’s Know, Love & Serve Pastoral Planning Initiative.

Father Kerst will step down as Director of Continuing Education for Priests, a post he has held since February 2010. Replacing him in that position will be Father Timothy Hays, pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Colbert. Father Hays will continue as pastor of St. Joseph.

Father Kerst, 51, was ordained a priest of the Spokane Diocese on May 23, 1990.

He was associate pastor of St. Patrick Parish, Pasco, and parochial vicar of St. Patrick and St. Francis of Assisi parishes, Walla Walla, before being named pastor of the parishes in Brewster and Twisp in 1996.

He returned to the two Walla Walla parishes, as pastor, in 2001. He became pastor of Assumption Parish, Walla Walla, in addition to St. Patrick and St. Francis of Assisi, in 2010.

He was named pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley, and St. Joseph Parish, Rockford, July 1, 2012.

Father Savelesky, 67, will continue as the diocese’s Moderator of the Curia and Director of Deacon Formation; as pastor of the parishes in Rosalia and St. John; and pastoral administrator of St. Rose of Lima Parish, Cheney.

He was ordained to the priesthood Aug. 4, 1973. Among his assignments, Father Savelesky has served the diocese as rector of Bishop White Seminary, twice as Director of Deacon Formation, Communications Director and Editor of the Inland Register, and pastor of St. Peter Parish, Spokane; St. Patrick and St. Francis of Assisi, Walla Walla; Assumption, Spokane; and the parishes in Tekoa, Rosalia, Oakesdale, and St. John.

He was named Moderator of the Curia in 2011.

Father Dublinski, 55, was ordained a priest June 29. 1985.

He was associate pastor of St. John Vianney, Spokane Valley, and St. Charles, Spokane, before being named pastoral administrator, and then pastor, of St. Charles in 1990.

He became pastor of St. Mary Parish, Spokane Valley, in 1997, and was named Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia in 2002.

Father Dublinski served the parishes in Rosalia, Tekoa, Oakesdale, and St. John as pastor from 2003-2005, and in 2005 was named rector of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes.

July 1, 2011, he was named rector of Bishop White Seminary and Director of Seminarians. He was appointed pastor of St. Augustine Parish, Spokane, last year.

Father Hays, 52, was ordained to the priesthood June 12, 1996.

His first assignment as a priest was to St. Patrick and St. Francis of Assisi parishes, Walla Walla, as parochial vicar.

In 1999 he was named pastor of Sacred Heart Parish, Othello. Three years later he returned to Walla Walla, as pastor of Assumption Parish.

He was assigned as pastor of St. Joseph Parish, Colbert, in 2011.


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