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Class Notes Profiles

Biology to bishop

David Malloy, Arts ’79, was all set for medical school but God had a different plan.

The biology student traded beakers for a Bible when he entered St. Francis de Sales Seminary in Milwaukee. He earned advanced degrees in theology at Gregorian University. Today, the Most Rev. David Malloy is bishop of the Diocese of Rockford, Ill., one of the state’s largest dioceses.

“The studies are never without their purpose and never lost, even if you go in a different direction later,” he says.

A Milwaukee native, Bishop Malloy traveled extensively before landing in Rockford. He spent eight years working as a Vatican diplomat in Pakistan, Syria and at the United Nations and another 10 leading the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in Washington, D.C. In March 2012, Pope Benedict appointed Bishop Malloy to lead the Rockford Diocese.

“You’re the center of Catholic unity for the diocese,” Bishop Malloy says, explaining his liturgical role. “Being the successor to the apostle, you’re the connection to the Holy Father and the universal church. I’m effectively the chief teacher of the faith for the diocese, in charge of prayer and the church’s liturgy and unity.”

Keeping the faithful together is a key charge. “Sometimes I have to make decisions and make sure they’re the right and best decisions for the church, and that’s a lot of responsibility,” Bishop Malloy says. “Even as we have particular characteristics and particular geographies, we truly believe that the church is one, holy and apostolic.” Jessie Bazan


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