Pope Francis appoints Greensburg, Pa., bishop to head Cleveland Diocese
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Pope Francis has named Bishop Edward C. Malesic of Greensburg, Pennsylvania, to head the Diocese of Cleveland.
Bishop Malesic, 59, has been Greensburg’s bishop since 2015. He will be the 12th bishop of Cleveland and succeeds Archbishop Nelson J. Perez, who was named by the pope to be Philadelphia’s archbishop Jan. 23.
The appointment was announced July 16 in Washington by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the Vatican nuncio to the United States.
Bishop Malesic will be installed Sept. 14 at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Cleveland.
Edward Charles Malesic was born Aug. 14, 1960, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, to Joseph A. and the late Elizabeth Schatt Malesic. One of four children, he was raised in Enhaut, Pennsylvania. Two of his siblings are deceased, Joseph Jr. and Margaret R. Malesic. His surviving brother, Robert, lives in Hummelstown, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Constance. His father, at 102, is still quite active and lives near Hershey, Pennsylvania.
He attended Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Pennsylvania, for three years before going to the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio, where he received a bachelor’s degree in 1983 and earned a master of divinity degree in 1987.
He was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Harrisburg May 30, 1987, by then-Bishop William H. Keeler.
When Pope Francis appointed then-Father Malesic to head the Greensburg Diocese April 24, 2015, he had been serving as judicial vicar for the Harrisburg Diocese since 2006 and was pastor of Holy Infant Parish in York Haven, Pennsylvania. He was installed as Greensburg’s fifth bishop July 13, 2015.
On June 29, 2017, Bishop Malesic released his first pastoral letter, “A Pastoral Letter on the Drug Abuse Crisis: From Death and Despair to Life and Hope,” in response to the opioid epidemic in the region.
In the pastoral, he called on the people of the Greensburg Diocese to take action against the opioid scourge and outlined diocesan and parish efforts focused on prayer, education and cooperative actions with social service agencies already engaged in the fight against addiction.
In response to the clergy abuse crisis and the release of the Pennsylvania grand jury report and in order to increase diocesan transparency and outside oversight, Bishop Malesic established a Safe Environment Advisory Council to assist the diocese.
The advisory council oversaw a series of seven listening sessions around the diocese, each of which was attended by Bishop Malesic and gave parishioners the opportunity to express their feelings about the grand jury report, make observations and offer suggestions.
The grand jury released its report Aug. 14, 2018, after a monthslong investigation into alleged abuse by clergy and other church workers in the dioceses of Pittsburgh, Allentown, Scranton, Erie, Harrisburg and Greensburg. The report covered a 70-year period starting in 1947.
In February 2019, Bishop Malesic announced details of a Comprehensive Reconciliation Initiative, which includes a Survivors’ Compensation Program, to support survivors of abuse.
As bishop of Greensburg, he has been a member of the board of governors of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference. He also has served on the boards of St. Vincent Seminary and St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, Seton Hill University in Greensburg and is a member of Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania.
He is a member of two U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ committees: the Committee on Canonical Affairs and Church Governance and the Subcommittee for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe.