Bishop-designate Senior’s Mass of Installation will take place on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, in the Cathedral of Saint Patrick, Harrisburg
HARRISBURG, Pa. – Today, His Excellency, the Most Reverend Ronald W. Gainer, Eleventh Bishop of Harrisburg, announced that Pope Francis has named His Excellency, the Most Reverend Timothy C. Senior, as the Twelfth Bishop of Harrisburg. Bishop-designate Senior succeeds Bishop Gainer, who, in keeping with canon law, offered his resignation to the Holy Father when he turned 75 years of age in August of 2022. Bishop Senior’s Mass of Installation will be at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, at the Cathedral of Saint Patrick in Harrisburg.
“This is a joyous day for our clergy, staff, the people of the Diocese and for me personally. I have known Bishop Senior for well over 25 years and have full confidence that he will be a caring, faithful shepherd who will speak the truth with love and conviction, leading the Diocese of Harrisburg with the truths of the Church as a witness of Jesus Christ,” said Bishop Gainer. “I am grateful to our Holy Father in sending the Diocese of Harrisburg a man devoted to answering the call of the Gospel, who also has numerous skills in business, education, and human service administration. The Diocese of Harrisburg will be well cared for in the hands of Bishop Senior.”
Bishop Senior was ordained an Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia in July, 2009. He is currently Regional Bishop of Montgomery County and Philadelphia-South, as well as Chancellor of Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary.
Prior to assuming these responsibilities, Bishop Senior served as Rector of Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary from 2012 to 2022, after having been the Moderator of the Curia of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia from 2009 to 2012. He served as Vicar for Clergy from 2004 to 2009. From 1992 to 2004, Bishop Senior served in the Archdiocesan Secretariat for Catholic Human Services, both as Deputy Secretary and then Secretary.
A 1977 graduate of Lansdale Catholic High School, Lansdale, Pa., Bishop Senior is a classically trained pianist and the youngest of the three children of the late James H. and Elise Rothwell Senior. He was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in 1985. He earned a Masters of Divinity and Master of Arts in Theology from Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, served as an assistant pastor at a parish in Bucks County and taught religion in an Archdiocesan high school. He was then assigned to graduate studies at Boston College, earning his Masters in Social Work and Masters in Business Administration in 1992.
In 1998, he was named Honorary Chaplain to His Holiness, and in 2005, he was named a Prelate of Honor. In 2009, Bishop Senior was appointed Titular Bishop of Floriana and Auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, and was ordained a Bishop on July 31, 2009 by Cardinal Justin Rigali.
In responding to today’s announcement, Bishop Senior said, “I am profoundly grateful to Pope Francis for his confidence and trust in appointing me to serve the faithful of the Diocese of Harrisburg as their next bishop. Trusting in God’s will and the gifts of the Holy Spirit, I pray that I may be a faithful, holy, and worthy shepherd for the people of central Pennsylvania in service of Jesus Christ and for the good of His Church.”
Bishop Gainer has led the Diocese of Harrisburg since 2014 and plans to remain in the Diocese as our Bishop Emeritus.
The Diocese of Harrisburg was established on March 3, 1868. It covers 15 counties in south and central Pennsylvania, including: Adams, Columbia, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Juniata, Lancaster, Lebanon, Mifflin, Montour, Northumberland, Perry, Snyder, Union and York. The Diocese has 97 parishes and missions, 35 Catholic schools, and is home to approximately 201,000 registered Catholics.