The Catholic Archdiocese of Dubuque announced a new leader Monday morning.
Former Dubuque archbishop 72-year-old Jerome Hanus is retiring, citing declining health. Recently installed Pope Francis appointed bishop of Wichita, Kansas, 58-year-old Michael Jackels, to replace Hanus.
Hanus said he got word of Pope Francis’ approval of his retirement and naming of Jackels as his replacement about two weeks ago.
“I knew [Jackels] before, and I thought that he would be a very good choice,” Hanus said. “I was thrilled when I learned that he was the one coming here.”
Jackels is fluent in Spanish and said he believes in promoting cultural and ethnic diversity. He served for a time in Rome under then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who is now known as Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.
“You can tell he’s a people-person,” Hanus said. “He enjoys being with people, he enjoys serving them, so I think he’ll be embraced by the people and he already is embracing them.”
The Archdiocese of Dubuque covers 30 Iowa counties, stretching from Dubuque to Story County.
Thanks to our sister station KWWL for this story.