Harry Joseph Flynn
| Archbishop Emeritus of Saint Paul and Minneapolis |
Bishop Emeritus of Lafayette
|Archdiocese||Saint Paul and Minneapolis|
|Appointed||February 22, 1994 (Coadjutor)|
|Installed||September 8, 1995|
|Term ended||May 2, 2008|
|Ordination||May 28, 1960|
|Consecration||June 24, 1986|
by Howard James Hubbard, Philip Matthew Hannan, Gerard Louis Frey
|Born||May 2, 1933|
Schenectady, New York, U.S.
|Died||September 22, 2019 86) (aged|
Saint Paul, Minnesota, U.S.
|Previous post||Bishop of Lafayette in Louisiana|
|Alma mater||Siena College|
|Motto||Come Lord Jesus|
Harry Joseph Flynn
|Spoken style||Your Excellency|
Harry Joseph Flynn (May 2, 1933 – September 22, 2019) was a prelate of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States and Archbishop Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, where he served from September 8, 1995 to May 2, 2008, when his resignation was accepted by Pope Benedict XVI. Previously, Archbishop Flynn was the fourth Bishop of the Diocese of Lafayette in south-central Louisiana.
Born in Schenectady, New York to William and Margaret Mahoney Flynn, he was orphaned when he was twelve and raised primarily by two of his aunts.Flynn was a graduate of Siena College, having earned both a B.A. and a M.A. in English. After attending Mount Saint Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland, he was ordained on May 18, 1960. He later became a priest of the Diocese of Albany, New York. After his ordination, he taught at Catholic Central High School in Troy, New York. From 1965 to 1979, he served on the faculty of Mount Saint Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland. From 1965-1968 he was the dean; he was vice-rector from 1968-1970; and the rector from 1970-1979.
While Flynn was serving as a parish priest in the Diocese of Albany, his secretary received a phone call from the papal nuncio. When she passed along the call, Flynn realized he was about to be appointed a bishop and in an attempt to dodge the appointment drove to a family cabin in the Adirondacks. Cardinal John O’Connor of the Archdiocese of New York sent a state trooper to bring him back.He would often say in his later years "If I had 100 lives, I’d live every one of them as a priest - and none as a bishop!"
Flynn's appointment as the coadjutor bishop of Lafayette, Louisiana was announced on April 19, 1986 and he was consecrated as a bishop on June 24, 1986.He took on the full role of bishop on May 12, 1989, succeeding Bishop Gerard Louis Frey. He became the bishop of Lafayette, Louisiana, in the aftermath of one of the earliest public scandals involving the sexual abuse of minors by a priest.
In 1995, Flynn became the Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.
Flynn was especially noted for his devotion to Catholic education and the emphasis in his ministry on social justice, especially within his own archdiocese. He was also a strong advocate for Catholic economic justice abroad, and many of the parishes in the archdiocese have sister parishes in impoverished nations, such as Costa Rica. On September 12, 2003, he released a pastoral letter dealing with the issue of racism titled In God's Image, in which he called for the parishes of the diocese to unite in an effort to end racism and promote diversity and harmony, and in so doing, to make God's love more present to the rest of the world.
In May 2005, Archbishop Flynn publicly criticized Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty in the Star Tribune for what he perceived as irresponsible tax policies.[ citation needed ]
Flynn was an outspoken opponent of the war in Iraq.
In keeping with Catholic tradition, Flynn instructed his priests to refuse communion to any person wearing a rainbow sash—a symbol associated with those advocating change in the Church's position on homosexual activity.[ citation needed ]
After serving as Archbishop for 12 years, Flynn requested that the Holy See assign a coadjutor archbishop, and on April 24, 2007, Pope Benedict XVI appointed John Clayton Nienstedt, Bishop of the Diocese of New Ulm, Minnesota, as Flynn's coadjutor.
In January 2008, Flynn, citing a Vatican instruction from 2004, ordered an end to the practice of lay preaching at Mass, sending as the end date for the practice his final day as Archbishop. He said: "There has to be that kind of training and theological background that even a person with a master's degree in theology would not have. The church does not want people just standing up there and giving opinions or even things they've read in books."
On May 5, 2008, Pope Benedict XVI accepted Flynn's resignation and Nienstedt succeeded him as Archbishop.He continued to assist in the Archdiocese after his retirement, administering confirmations, leading retreats, and other liturgies.
In November 2010, the Little Sisters of the Poor honored Flynn with their St. Jeanne Jugan Award on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his ordination.
Flynn resigned from the board of the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul on October 14, 2013.
Flynn died on September 22, 2019 from bone cancer in Saint Paul, Minnesota at the age of 86.
Archbishop Flynn was a member of several boards and committees.
Flynn was named to chair the USCCB Committee on Sexual Abuse in 2002.
In 2009, the University of St. Thomas renamed a residence hall, formerly Selby Hall, to Flynn Hall to recognize Archbishop Flynn.
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|Catholic Church titles|
| Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis |
John Clayton Nienstedt
Gerard Louis Frey
| Bishop of Lafayette in Louisiana |
Edward Joseph O'Donnell