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KUCERA, Daniel

From Encyclopedia Dubuque
Revision as of 03:50, 23 July 2008 by Randylyon (talk | contribs) (New page: KUCERA, Daniel. (Chicago, IL, May 7, 1923- ). ARCHBISHOP. Archbishop Kucera was installed as the tenth bishop of Dubuque and the eighth archbishop on February 23, 1984, after the retir...)
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KUCERA, Daniel. (Chicago, IL, May 7, 1923- ). ARCHBISHOP. Archbishop Kucera was installed as the tenth bishop of Dubuque and the eighth archbishop on February 23, 1984, after the retirement of Archbishop James J. BYRNE. Born William Kucera, the future archbishop adopted a new and religious name when he took his vows as a monk at St. Procopius Abbey in Lisle, Illinois, in the 194Os.

Kucera earned a doctorate in education, then joined the Order of St. Benedict in 1944. Ordained a priest in 1949, he became in 1977 one of the first Benedictines to be appointed a United States bishop. At the age of thirty-six, Kucera was named the youngest president of the Illinois Benedictine College. His background in education led Vatican officials, including the pope, to seek his advice.

Within the first three years of his administration, Kucera reorganized and established archdiocesan boards and established the Archbishop's Cabinet to coordinate the work of the central offices of the archdiocese. He also reorganized the deanery boundaries to reduce the number of deaneries from sixteen to fourteen. The guidelines for the Sacrament of Confirmation were revised and published at the end of 1986. He approved major renovation of SAINT RAPHAEL'S CATHEDRAL and sold the Stout House which had served as the residence of the archbishops of Dubuque and the offices of the archdiocese since 1911.

On November 30, 1986, Kucera proclaimed the 150th anniversary of the founding of the ARCHDIOCESE OF DUBUQUE with the challenge to Remember, Rejoice and Proclaim." Local celebrations throughout the archdiocese culminated on July 28, 1987, in a final public celebration at the FIVE FLAGS CIVIC CENTER.

On February 8, 1987, Kucera announced a plan to create three regions in the Archdiocese of Dubuque with a resident bishop in each area. The regions were designated Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, and Waterloo. Bishop Francis J. Dunn served the Cedar Rapids area. Bishop William E. Franklin lived in Waterloo. The Dubuque region was served by retired Archbishop James J. Byrne and Archbishop Kucera. The bishops, representatives of the archbishop, also provided a consistent presence of the Catholic church in the western regions of the archdiocese.