Bishop Donald J. Hying introduced as diocese’s fifth bishop Print
Around the Diocese
Written by Kevin Wondrash, Catholic Herald Staff   
Thursday, May. 02, 2019 -- 12:00 AM
hying greets people
Bishop Hying greets people following Mass at Holy Name Heights.  (Catholic Herald photo/Kevin Wondrash)

MADISON -- “I’m very enthused, excited, and grateful to be here,” said Bishop-designate Donald J. Hying of Madison.

With many relatives in the Diocese of Madison and a lot of time spent here over the years, he added, “I feel very much at home here,” saying “I have great memories of southwest Wisconsin. The beauty of the faith here, the beauty of the land here.”

At a press conference on April 25 at Holy Name Heights in Madison, Diocesan Administrator Msgr. James Bartylla introduced Bishop Hying as the fifth bishop of Madison.

“Annuntio Vobis Gaudium Magnum -- I bring you news of great joy,” said Monsignor Bartylla. “We have Bishop Donald Hying, the fifth bishop of Madison here, today.”

Bishop Hying, who had been serving as the Bishop of Gary, Ind., since 2015, will fill the vacancy left following the death of Bishop Robert C. Morlino of Madison in November of 2018.

Monsignor Bartylla thanked Pope Francis “in his pastoral solicitude for appointing Bishop Hying” to the Diocese of Madison.

He also thanked Bishop Hying, himself, saying “There’s a lot of sacrifice involved in transferring from the Diocese of Gary to the Diocese of Madison. It’s a quiet sacrifice. It’s one people normally don’t see, but we’re very grateful.”

Monsignor Bartylla also thanked the people of the Diocese of Gary, saying “to lose their bishop for the good of the Church, we hold them in prayerful solicitude for all that they’re giving up in regards to Bishop Hying coming here.

‘Enthusiasm and gratitude’

At the press conference, Bishop Hying said, “It is with great enthusiasm and gratitude that I come to you, today, as the new leader, the Bishop of Madison, to build on the great foundation of Bishop Morlino.”

He added, “Madison is a significant community because it is the capital of the state and the university here. There’s a great significance

to what happens in this city and in this diocese. I’m very grateful to be a part of it.”

Rejoicing in the Easter season, he said, “It really comes down to proclaiming Jesus, crucified and risen. So, today really isn’t about me. It’s always about the Lord. It’s always about what Jesus is doing for us.”

Truth and love

When asked about the diversity of opinions on issues in Madison, Bishop Hying said he will focus on a fusion of “love and truth.”

“Truth without love becomes harsh, rigid, judgmental,” he said “Love without truth becomes sentimental and kind of just devoid of content.”

He added, “When you fuse love and truth together, you have the firepower of the Gospel . . . The Church’s mission is always to speak the truth that God has revealed to us, but do so with love and compassion.”

He also reiterated the dignity and importance of everyone in the Church.

“Everyone from the pope to the newest baptized baby is of equal importance in the Church,” said Bishop Hying, while noting everyone has different roles, “no one is less important or more important.”

Looking ahead

Similar to what he did in the Gary Diocese, Bishop Hying said he wants to meet with every priest and deacon in the Diocese of Madison “to get to know them as people.”

He added he’d hope to visit every parish, school, and community in the next year.

“I would love to set that as an ambitious goal,” Bishop Hying said.

He had no definite position to share when asked about a new cathedral in the diocese, saying, “I am certainly open to suggestion and direction.”

Following the press conference, Bishop Hying met with diocesan staff members and members of related organizations at Holy Name Heights. There, he told a little about himself, and encouraged employees to ask him questions, as a way for him to get to know everyone, and staff members to get to know him.

Mass of Thanksgiving

At 12 noon, Bishop Hying celebrated Mass in the oratory at Holy Name Heights.

Priests of the diocese, including those in the College of Consultors, served as concelebrants.

Mass attendance was higher than usual for a 12 noon Mass in the oratory at Holy Name Heights, as hundreds came out to celebrate Easter Thursday and get a look at their new shepherd.

During his homily, Bishop Hying told everyone what a blessing it was to celebrate Mass with them and said, “I’m your new bishop” and adding it’s as much of a surprise to him as it is to everyone, having only found out a few days before of his new assignment.

He said when “we set the sail of our life” to the direction the Holy Spirit asks of us, we’ll end up exactly where God wants us to be.

Following that direction, he hoped “great things would happen” in the Diocese of Madison during his time here.

He acknowledged wanting to continue the legacy of the late Bishop Morlino, and thanked Monsignor Bartylla for this leadership in the diocese over the past few months and “for all the good priests, deacons, Religious, and lay leaders in the Diocese of Madison.”

Following Mass, Bishop Hying greeted many of the parishioners who came to the Mass with only a few hours notice. He paused to shake hands, receive welcomes, and take many pictures with his new flock in the Diocese of Madison.

Installation plans

Bishop Hying will be installed as the fifth Bishop of Madison on Tuesday, June 25, at an installation Mass at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison.

The night before, Monday, June 24, there will be a vespers service at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison.

Later in that week, on Friday, June 28, Bishop Hying will celebrate the Presbyteral Ordination Mass at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison at 7:30 p.m.

Deacons Steve Brunner, Bill Van Wagner, and soon-to-be ordained Deacon Cristian Valenzuela, from the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest, are scheduled be ordained to the priesthood.

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