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Bishop Deeley Biography

Most Rev. Robert Deeley, J.C.D.
Ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston: July 14, 1973

Named Prelate of Honor (Monsignor): December 13, 1993
Ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Boston: January 4, 2013
Named Bishop of Portland: December 18, 2013
Installed as Bishop of Portland: February 14, 2014

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Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Bishop Robert P. Deeley, J.C.D., grew up in Belmont, Massachusetts, as the fourth in a family of five sons. His parents, Michael and Mary, now deceased, were born in County Galway, Ireland. His family belonged to Sacred Heart Parish in Watertown, MA, and Bishop Deeley attended Matignon High School in North Cambridge. Following high school, he entered Cardinal O’Connell Minor Seminary in Jamaica Plain to discern a vocation to the priesthood. After two years of college, he received a Theodore Basselin Foundation Scholarship and began philosophy studies at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., from which he graduated in 1968. In 1972, he earned a degree in Theology (S.T.B.) from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome. Following a year of continuing studies in theology, he returned to Boston and was ordained to the priesthood on July 14, 1973, at his home parish, Sacred Heart in Watertown. 

His first local assignment was as associate pastor at St. Bartholomew parish in Needham. In 1978, with his appointment as Secretary to the Metropolitan Tribunal of the Archdiocese of Boston, Bishop Deeley began a ministry in the Tribunal which would last for over twenty years, the last ten of which he served as Judicial Vicar (1989-1999). Throughout that period, apart from his years of graduate study in Rome in Canon Law, he lived at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes Parish in Newton and St. Brigid Parish in Lexington where he was able to provide priestly presence and assistance. He was named a Prelate of Honor (Monsignor) on December 13, 1995.

Bishop Deeley was named pastor of St. Ann Parish in the Wollaston section of Quincy in 1999. He assumed the presidency of the Canon Law Society of America in 2000. He went to Rome in September 2004 to assist as an Official at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Then, he served at the Congregation until being named Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia of the Archdiocese of Boston in the summer of 2011. On January 4, 2013, he was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Boston by Cardinal Seán O’Malley.

On December 18, 2013, Pope Francis appointed Bishop Deeley the 12th Bishop of the Diocese of Portland, Maine. Bishop Deeley was installed as bishop on February 14, 2014, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland.

Bishop Deeley was named the recipient of the “Role of Law Award,” the Canon Law Society of America’s most prestigious honor, on October 12, 2016. The “Role of Law Award” is given to an individual who has distinguished himself in the practice of canon law, serving God’s people through the use of this law of the Church. Bishop Deeley is being honored for his long record of dedication to the law of the Church in teaching, practice, administration, and pastoral assistance.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) elected Bishop Deeley as the new chairman-elect of the USCCB’s Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance. The election was held as part of the USCCB Fall General Assembly on November 15, 2016, in Baltimore, Maryland. Bishop Deeley will serve one year as chairman-elect before beginning a three-year term at the conclusion of the 2017 USCCB Fall General Assembly.

Experience

11/15/2016-Present   Chairman-Elect, USCCB's Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance
2/14/2014-Present   Bishop, Diocese of Portland

1/2013-2/2014

 

Auxiliary Bishop, Archdiocese of Boston

9/2011-2/2014   Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia, Archdiocese of Boston
2010-9/2011   Aiutante di Studio, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
Palazzo del S. Uffizio
00120 Cittá del Vaticano
2004-2010   Official, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
2003-2004   External Collaborator, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
1999-2004   Pastor, St. Ann Parish, Wollaston, MA
Judge, Metropolitan Tribunal of the Archdiocese of Boston
2002-2004   Vicar Forane, Quincy Vicariate, Archdiocese of Boston
1989-1999   Judicial Vicar, Archdiocese of Boston
1986-1989   Adjunct Judicial Vicar, Metropolitan Tribunal of the Archdiocese of Boston
1985-1986   Judge, Metropolitan Tribunal of the Archdiocese of Boston
1981-1985   Graduate Study in Canon Law, Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, Italy
1978-1981   Secretary, Metropolitan Tribunal of the Archdiocese of Boston
1973-1978   Associate Pastor, Saint Bartholomew Parish, Needham, MA

Education

1986   J.C.D. (summa cum laude) - Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome
Thesis: The Mandate for Those who Teach Theology in Institutes of Higher Studies: An Interpretation of the Meaning of Canon 812 of the Code of Canon Law
1985   Diploma (summa cum laude) - School of Latin Letters, Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome
1983   J.C.L. Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome
1972   S.T.B. Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome
1968   A.B. The Catholic University of America (Basselin Scholarship)

Teaching Appointments

2009-2011   Pontifical North American College, Rome, Italy
"Homiletics for Pastoral Ministry"
2007-2011   Pontifical North American College, Institute for Continuing Theological Education, Lectures on the Work of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith
2001-2004   Weston School of Theology, Cambridge, MA
"Canon Law: Introduction and Application,"
"Marriage: Theological, Canonical and Pastoral Perspectives"
1992 and 1998   Pastoral Institute, Archdiocese of Boston,
"Marriage Today: Theology, Law, Morality," (September - December), (March -May)
1989 and 1991  

St. John's Seminary, Brighton, MA
Lecturer - "Introduction to Canon Law," (Spring Semester)

1977-1981   Labouré College
Lecturer - "Medical Ethics"
1975-1977   St. John's Seminary College, Brighton, MA
Lecturer - "Philosophy Seminar"

Parochial Assignments

1999-2004   Pastor, St. Ann Parish, Wollaston, MA
1985-1999   Assistant Priest in Residence, St. Brigid Parish, Lexington, MA
1988-1999   Chaplain, Provincial House, Retirement House and Youville Assisted Living Residence, Sisters of Charity of Montreal, "Grey Nuns," Lexington, MA
1978-1981   Assistant Priest in Residence, Mary Immaculate of Lourdes Parish, Newton Upper Falls, MA
1973-1978   Associate Pastor, St. Bartholomew Parish, Needman, MA

Publications

The Mandate for Those who Teach Theology in Institutes of Higher Studies
(Rome, Italy: 1986 privately published doctoral dissertation)
Canon 812: The Mandate for Those Who Teach Theology, Proceedings of the Canon Law Society
of America
(50: 1988, pp.70-85)
Code of Canon Law: Latin-English Edition,
Washington, D.C. Canon Law Society of America, 1998, translation editor
Brought to Light (Ans Licht gebracht),
Reflections on the crime of solicitation in the context of the Sacrament of Penance
(Das Bubsakrament als Kontaktaufnahme fur den sexuellen Missbrauch: Reflexionen
uber das Delikt der Sollicitatio), 2012, pp.59-80

Boards, Commissions, Councils

USCCB's Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance
Chairman-Elect (2016-2017)
iCatholic Media, Inc., Watertown, MA
Member, Board of Trustees (2012-Current)
Blessed John XXIII National Seminary, Weston, MA
Member, Board of Trustees (2011-Current)
St. John's Seminary, Brighton, MA
Member, Board of Trustees (2011 - Current)
Covenant Health Systems, Lexington, MA
Member, Board of Directors (1999-2009)
Canonical Affairs Committee of the Archdiocese of Boston
Member (1989-2004)
Chair (1989-1999)
Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs Committee of the Archdiocese of Boston,
Member (1986-2004)
Advisory Council, Matignon High School, Cambridge, MA,
Member (2000-2003)
Eighth Synod of the Archdiocese of Boston
Member (1986-1988)
Eighth Synod of the Archdiocese of Boston - Committee for the Revision of the Archdiocesan Statutes
Member (1986-1988)
Committee: Pastoral Guidelines for the Celebration of the Sacraments, Archdiocese of Boston
Chair (1987-1989)

Memberships

Canon Law Society of America

Convention Liturgy Committee (1980-1981)

Marriage Research Committee (1990-1993)

Committee for the New Translation of the Code of Canon Law (1993-1999)

Board of Governors (1995-1997, 1999-2002)

Treasurer (1995-1997)

Vice President / President-Elect (1999-2000)

President (2000-2001)

Past President (2001-2002)

Committee for the Site Selection of the Executive Coordinator (2002-2003)

Committee for the Implementation of the Essential Norms (2003-2004)

Role of Law Award Recipient (2016)

Canon Law Society of Australia and New Zealand
Canon Law Society of Great Britain and Ireland