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Bishop Burbidge Announces New Rector for Sacred Heart Cathedral

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The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge announces the appointment of Father Daniel P. Oschwald as Rector of Sacred Heart Cathedral and the appointment of Msgr. Gerard M. Sherba, current Rector, to full-time responsibilities as Judicial Vicar, Chancellor and Bishop’s Delegate to Religious. Both assignments are effective June 30.

In a letter to parishioners of Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bishop Burbidge expressed his gratitude to Msgr. Sherba for his nine years of pastoral and spiritual leadership as Rector. He noted the parish has nearly doubled in size, which he points out is a “great testament to Msgr. Sherba, the priests who assisted him and the dedicated members of the Cathedral pastoral staff.”

In addition to serving as Rector, Msgr. Sherba holds two other important positions, Chancellor of the Diocese and Judicial Vicar of the Diocese. He was recently appointed to serve as liaison to the Council of Religious in the Diocese. “There comes a time when one a person comes to realize that he can only do so much,” Msgr. Sherba said, “and that time has come. I thank Bishop Burbidge for being the wonderful Shepherd that he is: a shepherd concerned about his flock – and especially about me.”

Msgr. Sherba said he is grateful that he will be able to continue to use his gifts and talents, especially his work in Canon Law, to be of more service to the Diocese of Raleigh.

In being appointed Cathedral Rector, Father Oschwald is leaving his position as Pastor of St. Mark’s Church in Wilmington, a position he has held since last July. In a letter to the parishioners of St. Mark announcing the appointment, Bishop Burbidge said he realizes the “great sacrifice Father Oschwald is making in accepting this appointment and in leaving the parish he loves so much.”

Bishop Burbidge expressed his gratitude to St. Mark’s parishioners for their cooperation and prayerful support at this time of transition. “As I seek recommendations from the Priest Personnel Committee regarding your next Pastor, I ask for your prayers,” the Bishop said in his letter. “I am committed to sending you a priest who will have the necessary pastoral and administrative experience, the enthusiasm and commitment to serve as your Pastor.” The forthcoming appointment will be effective June 30, 2009.

“It is with mixed emotions that I received this news,” Father Oschwald said, “for I have found great welcome and a wonderful home here at St. Mark. I am humbled by our Bishop's decision on this assignment and I look forward with the same trust and hope I came to St. Mark with in serving the people of the Cathedral Parish as their Rector.

“I am also most grateful to Msgr. Sherba who has been so encouraging and supportive of this assignment. Please pray for St. Mark and the Cathedral Parish, our Bishop and the Priest Personnnel Committee, Msgr. Sherba and myself.”