Darwin, Winsted welcomes Rev. John M. LeVoir as its fourth bishop
By Kristen Miller
The Diocese of New Ulm, which includes the Catholic St. John’s of Darwin and Holy Trinity in Winsted will no longer be without a bishop.
Pope Benedict XVI has named Rev. John M. LeVoir, 62, as the fourth bishop of the Diocese of New Ulm, according to a press release from the diocese.
The announcement was made in Washington, DC July 14, by Msgr. Martin Krebs, charge d’affaires of the Apostolic Nunciature to the Holy See.
Bishop-designate LeVoir succeeds Archbishop John C. Nienstedt, third bishop of the Diocese of New Ulm, who was named Coadjutor Archbishop of St. Paul and Minneapolis April 24, 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI.
Archbishop Nienstedt remained Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of New Ulm until Dec. 13, 2007, and then May 2, 2008, succeeded Archbishop Harry J. Flynn as archbishop of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.
Msgr. Douglas L. Grams has served as diocesan administrator since December.
John M. LeVoir was born Feb. 7, 1946, to Marvin A. and Mary A. LeVoir in Minneapolis.
He has two brothers and one sister. He received a bachelor of science degree in chemistry in 1968 from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul; a bachelor of science in business degree in accounting in 1971 from the University of Minnesota, becoming a certified public accountant in 1973; and recieved a bachelor of arts degree in history in 1974 from the University of Minnesota; and a master of arts degree in theology in 1981 from the St. Paul Seminary, St. Paul.
Prior to his ordination, he was employed, from 1971-1976, as a public accountant for several firms and also as an instructor of accounting at the University of Minnesota.
LeVoir was ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis May 30, 1981, by archbishop John R. Roach at the Cathedral of Saint Paul.
Following ordination, he served as associate pastor of the Church of St. Charles Borromeo in St. Anthony from 1981-1992; Pastor of the Church of the Holy Trinity in South St. Paul from 1992-2004; pastor of the Church of St. Augustine in South St. Paul from 2000-2004. Since 2004, LeVoir has served as pastor of the Church of St. Michael and the Church of St. Mary in Stillwater.
“During this past year, I have come to know Father John LeVoir, now bishop-designate of New Ulm, as a dedicated pastor of two of the finest parishes in the archdiocese, said Archbishop John C. Nienstedt.
“He is a priest of deep devotion to Christ and the teachings of His Church. He is also a skilled administrator, having a solid background in the areas of accounting and finance. He has served as a mentor for many of our younger priests.
But overall, it is his love for souls the people entrusted to his pastoral care that marks the goodness of this man.
Nienstedt continued by saying, “Having served as the bishop of New Ulm for six and a half years, I have already assured the new bishop that he is about to shepherd a diocese of good and faith-filled people.
“I believe that the Holy Father has made an ‘excellent’ match in appointing Bishop-designate LeVoir to this very rural, local church.
“My prayers and best wishes go with him as he begins this major transition in his life. I ask the beloved priests, religious, and laity of the New Ulm diocese to welcome their new shepherd with open minds and hearts and to support him with their prayers,” Nienstedt added.