FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 15, 2020
Diocese of Brooklyn Priest Reverend Kevin Sweeney Appointed
Bishop of Paterson, New Jersey by Pope Francis
Brooklyn, N.Y. (April 15, 2020) Pope Francis today announced he has named Reverend Kevin Sweeney, Pastor of St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Sunset Park, the 8th Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Paterson, New Jersey. Bishop-elect Sweeney will succeed retiring Bishop Arthur Serratelli, whose resignation was accepted today by the Holy Father. Bishop-elect Sweeney, who is 50 years old, is expected to begin his ministry in the Diocese of Paterson later this year.
“I congratulate Bishop-elect Kevin Sweeney for his appointment by the Holy Father to serve Catholics in the Paterson Diocese,” said the Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Bishop of Brooklyn. “I could not think of a better choice. Bishop-elect Sweeney has served the Diocese of Brooklyn for 22 years and is an outstanding example of a parish priest. I know he is a man of prayer and is a zealous advocate of vocations to the priesthood.”
Bishop-elect Sweeney, a native of Queens, New York, was born on January 10, 1970, to the late James and Agnes (nee Blewitt) Sweeney. He has a sister, Marie Shanahan, a brother-in-law Kevin, a brother, Brendan, a sister-in-law Tara, and five nieces and nephews. Bishop-elect Sweeney grew up in St. Luke’s parish in Whitestone.
He attended Cathedral Prep from 1984-1988 and was a star on the high school seminary’s baseball team, excelling as an infielder, outfielder, and pitcher. While his dream of playing professional baseball never materialized, he was inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame in 2013.
After high school graduation, Bishop-elect Sweeney entered the Cathedral Seminary House of Formation in Douglaston and studied at St. John’s University, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 1992. He then entered the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington and was awarded a Master of Divinity in Theology. During his time at the Seminary in Huntington, Bishop-elect Sweeney spent a Pastoral Year at St. Agatha’s in Brooklyn.
On June 28, 1997, Bishop-elect Sweeney was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn by the late Bishop Thomas Daily. Bishop-elect Sweeney’s first assignment as Parochial Vicar was to the parish of St. Nicholas of Tolentine in Jamaica from 1997-2003. He was then assigned to Our Lady of Sorrows in Corona from 2003-2004.
In 2004, Bishop DiMarzio named Bishop-elect Sweeney the Vocations Director for the Diocese of Brooklyn, a position he held until 2010. During this time, he also served as the first Director of the (St.) Pope John Paul II House of Discernment.
In January 2010, Bishop-elect Sweeney was appointed to his current assignment, as the Pastor of St. Michael’s Parish in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. Bishop-elect Sweeney is fluent in Spanish, having studied the language extensively in programs in the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica.
“This is a proud day for the Diocese of Brooklyn that the Holy Father would have chosen one of our priests to be a Bishop in our tri-state area,” said DiMarzio.
Bishop-elect Sweeney will be available for a remote zoom press conference at 10:30 a.m. Only those whose name is clearly stated in their zoom id and the news outlet they are affiliated with will be admitted.
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 977 0404 2772
Announcement Video of Bishop Serratelli and Bishop-Elect Sweeney: https://vimeo.com/407833935
Official photo with collar – Courtesy DeSales Media Group
Fr. Kevin Sweeney at Ordination – Courtesy The Tablet
Fr. Kevin Sweeney – Yankee jacket – Courtesy The Tablet