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Pope Francis Appoints New Auxiliary Bishop

From the Archdiocese of Seattle

Archbishop Paul D. Etienne today welcomed the appointment of Father Frank Schuster, current pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Federal Way, as the new auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Seattle.

“I am very grateful to the Holy Father for trusting me in this way,” said Bishop-elect Schuster, who has served as a priest of the Archdiocese of Seattle for nearly 23 years. “I’m also especially grateful to Archbishop Etienne for his support of me. I am enthusiastic to do what he needs me to do as his auxiliary.”

“It is truly a blessing to have Father Frank Schuster appointed to this auxiliary role,” said Archbishop Etienne. “His love for Jesus and joy for the priesthood is expressed through his love of service and enthusiasm for the Gospel. As an auxiliary bishop, he will join Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, and together, as shepherds, they will extend the ministry of our Lord Jesus accompanying people in their faith life. He will join in this season’s confirmations, attend deanery events, celebrate with the faithful, and be a partner for the Gospel out in the field. As such, I intend to keep him with his parish community so that he may continue to be one with the people.”

“I’m delighted that his intention is for me to stay in parish ministry. The ability to stay rooted in a community of faith is going to be grounding for me and lifegiving,” added Bishop-elect Schuster.

Ordination

Bishop-elect Frank Schuster’s ordination will take place on Tuesday, May 3, 2022, at St. James Cathedral. This event will be livestreamed on the Archdiocese of Seattle Facebook page.

The Request for an Auxiliary Bishop

Former Auxiliary Bishop Daniel Mueggenborg, who served in the Archdiocese of Seattle for four years, was appointed to the Diocese of Reno on July 20, 2021. After he moved, Archbishop Etienne requested a new auxiliary to help serve the Archdiocese of Seattle, which covers all of Western Washington, spanning from Canada down to the Oregon border and serving more than 600,000 Catholics.

“My vision is to restructure how we’re operating in the Archdiocese of Seattle,” said Archbishop Etienne, who has been eager to get out with the people. “Moving forward, the bishops will spend more time on their pastoral duties and less time on their administrative duties, which will be handled by the new leadership at the chancery.”

Father Frank Schuster 

Father Frank Schuster was born in Mount Vernon, Washington, to John and Virginia Schuster. At age 6 he, along with his parents and two siblings, Carolyn and John, moved to Maple Valley, where they lived along the Cedar River. He enjoyed his family-focused, Catholic upbringing and admits to being a bit of a rascal as a child and while attending Kennedy Catholic High School, where his father was the principal for more than 20 years. At the University of Washington, Father Schuster earned his B.A. in psychology, but spent most of his time at the Newman Center in peer ministry. After college he moved to Illinois and attended Mundelein Seminary where he received his Bachelor of Sacred Theology and his Master of Divinity.  

“After my third year of theology, I knew from the bottom of my heart that I had no other future. I knew it. I felt it,” said Father Schuster, who was ordained a priest on June 12, 1999. “I love being a priest. I’m just happy to be of service.”

He added, “It’s about going to the hospital when someone calls you. It’s about being there for people when they’re down. Having time to be able to sit down with someone who’s homeless. … Our lives should always point to Jesus.”

Bishop-elect Schuster’s love for Jesus and service has been felt at his pastoral assignments in the Archdiocese of Seattle:

  • 1999–2000: Parochial vicar, Church of the Assumption and Sacred Heart Church, Bellingham
  • 2000–2003: Chaplain, Catholic Campus Ministry, Western Washington University, Bellingham
  • 2001–2003: Pastor, Sacred Heart Church, Bellingham
  • 2003–2007: Pastor, Church of the Assumption, Bellingham
  • 2004–2007: Dean, Presbyteral Council member
  • 2006–2007: Pastor, Sacred Heart Church, Bellingham
  • 2006–2007: Chaplain, Catholic Campus Ministry, Western Washington University, Bellingham
  • 2007–2021: Pastor, St. Teresa of Calcutta Church, Woodinville
  • 2016–present: Director, Permanent Deacon Formation
  • 2021–present: Pastor, St. Vincent de Paul Church, Federal Way

To learn more about Bishop-elect Frank Schuster and enjoy his homilies, please visit his blog at https://fatherfrankschuster.com/