Statement from Bishop Emeritus John F. Kinney Re: Death of William Clemens

Diocese of St. Cloud

Joe Towalski
Director of Communications
(O) 320-258-7624

March 4, 2016

Bishop John F. Kinney, bishop emeritus of the Diocese of Saint Cloud, issued the following statement March 4 regarding the death of William Clemens:

“I first met Bill Clemens when I came to St. Cloud to serve as bishop, and over the years I had the opportunity to spend time with him on several occasions. He was a most gracious person, a delightful conversationalist, and a great man of the Church who was very generous to the community, the Church and the diocese. I extend my sympathies and gratitude to his entire family as I keep all of them in my prayers.”

Bishop Kinney served as bishop of St. Cloud from 1995 until his retirement in 2013 upon the appointment of Bishop Donald Kettler.

STATEMENT ON THE INTRODUCTION OF OUR NEW BISHOP, DONALD J. KETTLER by Bishop John F. Kinney (read by Vicar General, Reverend Robert E. Rolfes)

September 20, 2013

“Be still before the Lord and wait in patience” Ps 37.7)

These words from Psalm 37 and our diocesan Prayer for the appointment of a next Bishop have been a daily part of our prayer life in the Diocese of Saint cloud for these past fourteen months. Now I can report that I received a long-anticipated phone call on September 3 from the Apostolic Nuncio with the news of Pope Francis’ appointment of the next Bishop for Saint Cloud, my successor.

As much as I have been anxiously awaiting this word, I confess I have also been on edge about this day for I truly love this Diocese and I have been joyful at being your Bishop. But, I also know it is time, given my age and health, for a new and fresh Successor of the Apostles.

What thrills me is the selection of our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has made for the next Bishop of Saint Cloud. Surely the Holy Spirit has been at work seeking out for us a true pastor and a bishop who loves and serves the poor. Our prayers have truly been answered.

I want to introduce you to the ninth Bishop of the Diocese of Saint Cloud, the most Reverend Donald J. Kettler, the current Bishop of the Diocese of Fairbanks, Alaska. He will make a few opening remarks and then field your questions. Please join me in welcoming Bishop Kettler.

To view the live streamed announcement.

Habemus Papam

March 14, 2013

John F. Kinney, Bishop of Saint Cloud, joins Catholics around the world in welcoming Pope Francis:

It is a graced and exciting moment for the Church. I believe Pope Francis is a man of humility with a strong love for all people particularly for the poor.

Pope Francis is a Jesuit, a Latin American and, most important, a man of the people. I think this week has truly shown us that the selection of a new pope is the work of the Holy Spirit. The cardinals were indeed united in their efforts to find a new Holy Father, a man to shepherd the Church as we look to the future.

Here, also, is a man of deep prayer as we all witnessed when he stood on the balcony for the first time and asked everyone to join him in prayer. I am especially pleased with his desire, as Bishop of Rome, to continue the focus on Evangelization. If Evangelization begins in Rome how quickly it could spread throughout the world!

May our prayers be joined today and in the coming days for our Holy Father Pope Francis. Let us celebrate joyfully with all people of good will united in faith, hope and love!

God bless Pope Francis.

Bishop Issues Statement on Resignation of Pope Benedict XVI


Bishop_Kinney portrait 2012(St. Cloud, Minn., February 11, 2013) – Most Reverend John F. Kinney, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Saint Cloud, is issuing the following statement regarding the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI:

Early today, I learned that His Holiness, Benedict XVI, our 265th pope, announced his resignation as leader of the Roman Catholic Church effective February 28, 2013.

This news came as a complete surprise to me. In fact, even yesterday morning as I spent time in prayer, I prayed for his well being, his health and his pastoral work. Little did I know that I would hear this news today.

It is important for us to remember at a moment like this that indeed the Holy Spirit is in charge. Pope Benedict XVI referred to his own personal limitations in his resignation statement, “….in today’s world……both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me…………..” From my own personal experience of diminishment, I fully understand his decision and applaud his courage in making it.

When we met with Pope Benedict XVI during the Ad Limina meeting in March, he showed such care for us and concern for the Church in our Province that the following statement by Timothy Cardinal Dolan, president of the USCCB, speaks volumes, “The Holy Father brought the tender heart of a pastor, the incisive mind of a scholar and the confidence of a soul united with His God in all he did. His resignation is but another sign of his great care for the Church.”

In closing, let us pray for the well being of our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI and for the election of his successor.

For more information, contact Jane Marrin, Diocesan Communications Consultant, at (320) 529-4607 or email .

Prayer to Receive a New Bishop

Praise to you, Lord our God,
our eternal shepherd and guide.

In your faithfulness,
grant to the Diocese of Saint Cloud
a shepherd whose watchful care and kindly zeal
will continue the good work of his predecessors.

In your love for us,
give us a shepherd who will lead us
in being Christ’s heart of mercy,
voice of hope, and hands of justice.

Help him to fill our minds and hearts
with the truth of the Gospel,
the power of the sacraments,
and the desire to build up your holy Church.

We ask this through Jesus Christ,
your Son and our Lord,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen

+John F. Kinney
Bishop of Saint Cloud
Imprimatur given March 17, 2012

Prayer to receive New Bishop (PDF)

Prayer for Priests

Praise to you, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
for in your infinite love
you care for your people
by the ministry of priests.

May their faithful service
bring lasting good to your Church
and great happiness to them.
Help them to do what is right,
that by their teaching and living
we may grow in the knowledge of your love.

As our priests instruct your people,
enlighten them with the wisdom of Christ the Teacher.

As they preach your Word and celebrate the sacraments,
sanctify them with the holiness of Christ the High Priest.

As they face weakness, suffering and discouragement,
strengthen them with the grace of Christ the Life-Giver.

As they work for peace, unity and healing in your Church,
uphold them with the courage of Christ the Reconciler.

Giver of all good gifts,
make the ministry of our priests
a spiritual offering pleasing to you,
through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

+ John F. Kinney
Bishop of Saint Cloud
Imprimatur given March 19, 2002

Prayer for Priests (PDF)