Father Barron Named Rector of Chicago Seminary

Will Continue With 'Word on Fire'

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CHICAGO, MAY 11, 2012 (Zenit.org).- A priest well known for his use of the media to defend the faith and give a Catholic perspective on current events has been named the rector of the main seminary of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago announced today Father Robert Barron has been appointed rector-president of Mundelein Seminary/University of St. Mary of the Lake. Father Barron will assume this role in July at the seminary located outside Chicago. 

"As a priest of Jesus Christ I accept this responsibility with joy," said Father Barron. "The appointment brings together many of the elements that have long been of great importance to me, namely, the priesthood, theological scholarship, pastoral care and evangelization."

Father Barron is currently the Director of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, a media group he founded to advance the new evangelization. He will continue in this role and its mission, along with his new appointment at Mundelein. Last year, Word on Fire released a 10-part documentary series, Catholicism, which Father Barron created, wrote and hosted. The series aired across the country on PBS and EWTN.

“The mission of evangelization will continue to be a priority for me, and Word on Fire is essential to this mission,” said Father Barron.

Father Robert Barron, ordained in 1986, is a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago. He received his Masters’ Degree in Philosophy from the Catholic University of America in 1982 and a doctorate in Sacred Theology from the Institut Catholique in 1992. Barron was appointed to the theological faculty of Mundelein Seminary in 1992 and has also served as a visiting professor at the University of Notre Dame and at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas. He was twice scholar in residence at the Pontifical North American College.

University of Saint Mary of the Lake, also called Mundelein Seminary, is the principal seminary for the formation of priests in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Mundelein is one of the largest seminaries in the United States.