Most Rev. Robert E. Barron appointed bishop for the Diocese of Winona-Rochester


Winona, Minnesota, June 2, 2022 – Today, the Holy See announced that Pope Francis has appointed the Most Rev. Robert E. Barron, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, as the ninth bishop of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester.  His installation Mass has been set for Friday, July 29.

Bishop Barron, born on November 19, 1959 in Chicago, spent his childhood in Detroit and then in a suburb of Chicago.  Bishop Barron studied at Mundelein Seminary in Chicago and at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC before being ordained a priest on May 24, 1986.

After serving as an associate pastor for three years, Bishop Barron was sent to study at the Institut Catholique de Paris where he completed his Doctorate of Sacred Theology.  Bishop Barron served as professor of theology at Mundelein Seminary from 1992 to 2015 and also served as its president-rector from 2012 to 2015.

Bishop Barron launched his Word on Fire Catholic Ministries in 2000 and has been broadcast extensively throughout the world.  His 10-part documentary, Catholicism, aired on public television in the United States and he is the first priest since Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen to have a regular national program on a commercial television network.

Bishop Barron, through his clear teaching and love of the Gospel, has been able to share the truth of the Gospel to millions through the internet and, in particular, social media.  Barron’s Word on Fire website hosts daily blog posts, weekly articles and video commentaries and Bishop Barron has over 3.1million Facebook followers, 517,000 YouTube subscribers, 349,000 Instagram followers, and 198,000 Twitter followers.

On receiving the news of his appointment, Bishop Barron said: “I am overjoyed and humbled to receive this new assignment as the ninth bishop of Winona-Rochester.  I look forward immensely to getting to know the good people, priests, and pastoral ministers of the diocese.  I will have to brush off my Chicago winter coat, which has remained unused for the past six years in Santa Barbara!  My fondest hope is that I might be a good spiritual father to all the Catholics of southern Minnesota."

 “I am filled with joy that Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Robert Barron as the 9th Bishop of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester,” said Most Rev. John M. Quinn.  “His commitment to evangelization and missionary discipleship will bear great fruit in the coming years.”

A press conference will be available via live stream on the Diocesan website ( at 11:00.

The Diocese of Winona-Rochester serves the 20 southernmost counties of Minnesota with more than 130,000 Catholics and 107 parishes, four high schools, 30 elementary schools and the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary on the campus of St. Mary’s University in Winona.