When Pope Benedict XVI’s appointment of Bishop Donald J. Hying as auxiliary bishop of Milwaukee was announced May 26, 2011, Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki said the Holy Father had named a “servant leader” for the archdiocese. Three years later, he reiterated that point.
“The true servant leader asks this question: ‘What do you need from the church? What do you need me to
do? I am willing to do anything,’” the archbishop told the Catholic Herald May 13.
According to Archbishop Listecki, that “mode” has been present throughout Bishop Hying’s priesthood and in his three years as bishop.
“He’s always asked the question, ‘What does the church need me to do?’” the archbishop said. “I’ve seen that consistently in his service to the archdiocese. He’s oftentimes come to me and said, ‘What do you need me to do?’”
When Archbishop Listecki speaks about his experience as an auxiliary bishop in Chicago from 2001 to 2005, he notes he was a “collaborator and coworker” with the archbishop, Cardinal Francis E. George. He sees a similar role for Bishop Hying.
“I’ve seen Bishop Hying – and hopefully he’s felt this way – as a partner and collaborator with me because we work for the same goals – for Christ, for the good of the church, for the good and the growth of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. So our concern is always on that level,” the archbishop said.
He added that he viewed his auxiliary not “as an assistant, but as a brother bishop.”
“I have really relied upon him for his wisdom and his insights, and I take them very seriously. I take them very seriously because the Holy See has designated him as a bishop,” Archbishop Listecki said. “They’ve already seen a quality in him that suddenly demands that recognition.”
The archbishop praised Bishop Hying’s vision for the archdiocese, noting it has widened as the latter has grown as a bishop
“He’s always had a wonderful vision for the church, but in terms of taking that vision now as a shepherd or as a leader and sharing that vision and articulating that vision for the various communities that you serve, that’s a growth matter; it comes from your experience, it comes from seeing the struggles in the different communities you serve and understanding that each community demands a particular type of attention and sensitivity,” Archbishop Listecki said.
He noted that one area where Bishop Hying has focused is the growing Hispanic community.
“Obviously, because of his background in the Dominican Republic, he brings a sensitivity not only through his ability with language, but through his ability to understanding the familial nature of the Hispanic community,” Archbishop Listecki said. “He has been a real blessing to us in that way.”