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Spotlight Report

  Bishop Richard G. Lennon speaks publicly for the first time as apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Boston. (Globe Staff Photo / David L. Ryan)

IN-DEPTH

Bishop Richard Lennon, a new leader for Boston

When Cardinal Bernard Law resigned, Bishop Richard G. Lennon was chosen by the Vatican to temporarily oversee the Boston archdiocese. The former rector of St. John's Seminary faces the daunting task of healing the wounds inflicted by the scandal, while saving the archdiocese from a looming financial collapse. Lennon has pledged to work to resolve all abuse claims and to maintain an open dialogue with victims and the laity.

 Profile
Lennon's rise to the chancery
Raw determination has fueled the rise of Richard G. Lennon to his present, unsought prominence.

 Photo gallery
Bishop Lennon's rise to the chancery
Lennon's rise to the chancery

 Bishop Lennon's career
1947
Born March 26 in Arlington to Mary and Albert Lennon
1965
Graduated from Matignon High School in Cambridge.
1965-67
Attended Boston College.
1969
Graduated from St. John Seminary in Brighton.
1973
Ordained a priest after earning a master's degree in sacramental theology.
1984
Received a master's degree in church history.
1973-1982
Parochial vicar at St. Mary of the Nativity Church in Scituate.
1982-1988
Parochial vicar at St. Mary Church in West Quincy.
1988-1998
Archdiocesan assistant for canonical affairs.
1999
Named rector of St. John's Seminary.
2001
Ordained a bishop, charged with overseeing the western region of the Boston Archdiocese.
December 13, 2002
Named apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of Boston, upon the resignation of Cardinal Bernard F. Law.
Source: Archdiocese of Boston

December 14, 2002
Lennon is viewed as skilled manager
By Walter V. Robinson and Matt Carroll, Globe Staff
Richard Gerard Lennon is evidence that it is possible to be a bishop even in so Catholic a city as Boston and be virtually unknown to the faithful.

December 14, 2002
Memo mentioning Lennon cited in case from mid-'90s
By Michael Rezendes, Globe Staff
In the tens of thousands of pages of church files released during the year of scandal in the Boston Archdiocese, only a few bear the name of Richard G. Lennon, the man just named to run the archdiocese until a new bishop is named.

December 15, 2002
Lennon is expected to address crisis at Mass today
By Michael Rezendes and Walter V. Robinson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon will make his first public remarks as interim leader of the Boston Archdiocese when he celebrates Mass this morning at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston's South End.

December 16, 2002
New archdiocesan leader vows to work for healing
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard Gerard Lennon, the new man in charge of the Archdiocese of Boston, declared in his first public remarks yesterday that he wanted to listen to groups that have ideas for change in the church.

December 16, 2002
Skepticism and prayer
By Adrian Walker, Globe Columnist
Robert Hatch arrived at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross yesterday as an angry man, and he left an angry man. That is some measure of the task before Bishop Richard Lennon.

December 18, 2002
Lennon to outline goals for archdiocese
By Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon, the new administrator of the Archdiocese of Boston, is scheduled to hold his first news conference today, outlining for the first time his expectations and goals.

December 19, 2002
Lennon promises effort to settle abuse claims
By Michael Paulson and Walter V. Robinson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon, the man temporarily in charge of the Archdiocese of Boston, yesterday called for a moratorium on legal skirmishing as he pledged a renewed effort to negotiate a settlement with victims of clergy sexual abuse.

December 19, 2002
Earnestness soothes some church critics
By Thomas Farragher, Globe Staff
He was new and nervous - and it showed. He was earnest about his urgent mission, but far from fully versed in its details. Bishop Richard G. Lennon promised yesterday to support victims of clergy abuse, listen to priests, and protect children.

December 19, 2002
Bishop Lennon's role
A Boston Globe Editorial
Bishop Richard G. Lennon showed great caution at his press conference yesterday, as befits the interim leader of an archdiocese that has been at the center of the clergy sexual abuse scandal.

December 23, 2002
Lennon picks sites for sale, eyes court test in abuse cases
By Michael Rezendes and Walter V. Robinson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon said yesterday that he has selected church properties for sale and directed officials to put them on the market ''as soon as possible.''

January 13, 2003
Bishop Lennon charms parishioners with visit
By Peter Demarco, Globe Correspondent
Bishop Richard G. Lennon received a warm welcome at St. Jude's Church yesterday.

January 14, 2003
Lennon pledges to resolve accused clergy cases
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon sent all parish priests a bulletin yesterday telling them he is working to rapidly resolve the cases of 24 accused priests and to rewrite the church's policy for protecting children.

January 30, 2003
Lennon calls church's financial situation grave
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon declared yesterday that the Archdiocese of Boston is in more serious financial trouble than he had thought, and that he expects to be closing schools and making other unpopular cutbacks over the next several weeks.

February 5, 2003
Lennon gave advice on reassigned priest
By Michael Rezendes and Stephen Kurkjian, Globe Staff
Armed with opinions from the Rev. Richard G. Lennon, the Boston Archdiocese decided in the 1990s that it was powerless to punish a priest who had admitted raping another man, and that the priest was entitled to a hearing on whether he should be restored to full ministry.

February 16, 2003
Lennon's rise: from shy schoolboy to the chancery
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff
Raw determination has fueled the rise of Richard G. Lennon to his present, unsought prominence. He is the humble priest without discernible ambition, who stunned his colleagues when he was named to replace Cardinal Bernard F. Law.

February 25, 2003
Lennon to launch 'healing' initiative
By Michael Paulson, Globe Staff
Bishop Richard G. Lennon, after spending weeks focusing on the massive litigation confronting the Archdiocese of Boston, is launching his first major spiritual initiative -- an effort during Lent to heal a Catholic Church deeply wounded by the scandal of clergy sexual abuse.


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