Biography

 Biographical Summary

The Most Reverend John C. Wester,
Bishop of Salt Lake City
          

A native of San Francisco, California, John Charles Wester was ordained a Roman Catholic priest for the Archdiocese of San Francisco on May 15, 1976.  He has earned degrees from Saint Joseph College, Saint Patrick College, Saint Patrick Seminary, the University of San Francisco and Holy Names College.

            After his priestly ordination, many facets of ministry in the Church followed in the Bay Area that included assignments as an associate pastor, pastor, high school faculty member, director of campus ministry, high school president, assistant superintendent for high schools, and administrative assistant to Archbishop John R. Quinn.  On July 25, 1997, His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, named Reverend Wester a Prelate of Honor, giving him the title of Monsignor.  He then served as the vicar for clergy in the Archdiocese of San Francisco.  In 1998, Monsignor Wester was ordained auxiliary bishop of San Francisco and appointed to serve as the vicar general.  From 2005-2006, Bishop Wester served as the apostolic administrator of the Archdiocese of San Francisco.  On January 8, 2007, he was named Bishop of Salt Lake City and installed on March 14, 2007.  His kind and giving spirit reflects his Episcopal motto:  Abide in Christ.

            Throughout Bishop Wester's ministry, he has served on many Church boards and committees not only in California, but throughout the nation.  He has traveled to many countries, including third world countries, witnessed diverse cultures, visited the poorest of the poor and worked towards immigration reform on a local, national, and international level.  He presently serves on several committees of the USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops):

Communications Committee, Chair
Catholic Education Foundation Advisory Board, Member
Committee on Catholic Education, Member
Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, Consultant
Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth, Consultant
Committee on Migration, Consultant

In addition, BIshop Wester serves on several national boards:

Catholic Relief Services Board as chair of its subcommittee on overseas operations
Mexican American Catholic College's board of trustees
National Association for Lay Ministry, Episcopal Moderator
National Association of Catholic Chaplains
Saint Patrick Seminary Board
Zen/Ch'an - Catholic Dialogue

As the shepherd for the Diocese of Salt Lake City, Bishop Wester's ministry comprises the entire State of Utah, a total of 84,990 square miles and a burgeoning Hispanic population.  The bishop's dedication to his people is evident as he travels across the diocese to spread the Good News of our Lord, celebrate liturgies, dedicate new parishes and missions, bless new Catholic facilities, confer the Sacrament of Confirmation and meet with laity, religious and civic leaders in the spirit of working for the common good.

                                                                           (Written and updated by S. Mares, 02/21/2012)

                                 Biographical Sketch

- Born November 5, 1950, San Francisco, California, to Charles and Helen Wester
- Eldest of four siblings, Barry, Nancy and Kathryn
- Ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of San Francisco May 15, 1976
- Named Prelate of Honor July 25, 1997
- Appointed Auxiliary Bishop of San Francisco June 30, 1998
- Ordained Auxiliary Bishop of San Francisco September 18, 1998
- Appointed Bishop of Salt Lake City January 8, 2007
- Episcopal Installation as Bishop of Salt Lake City March 14, 2007

Education

1993     M.A. Holy Names College, Oakland, California
1984     M.A.S. University of San Francisco
1976     M.Div. Saint Patrick Seminary, Menlo Park, California
1972     B.A. Saint Patrick College, Mountain View, California
1968     Saint Joseph College, Mountain View, California

Ministry/Administration

Aug. 2005 - Feb. 2006 Apostolic Administrator, Archdiocese of San Francisco
1998 - March 2007      Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General, Archdiocese of San Francisco
1997 - March 2007     Vicar for Clergy, Archdiocese of San Francisco
1993 - 1997                Pastor, Saint Stephen Parish, San Francisco
1988 - 1993                Administrative Assistant to Archbishop John R. Quinn
1986 - 1988                Assistant Superintendent for High Schools, Archdiocese of San
                                   Francisco
1984 - 1986                President, Marin Catholic High School, Kentfield, California
1982 - 1984                Director of Campus Ministry, Marin Catholic High School,
                                  Kentfield, California
1979 - 1984               Faculty, Marin Catholic High School, Kentfield, California
1976 - 1979               Associate Pastor, Saint Raphael Parish, San Rafael, California

Utah Civic Memberships

Alliance for Unity, Member
Community Leader's Council on Internationalization, Member
United Way of Salt Lake City President's Advisory Board, Member

National Memberships

Catholic Relief Services Board, Member
CRS Executive Committee and Compensation Committee, Chair
CRS Overseas Operations Committee, Chair
Interreligious Dialogue, Consultant
Mexican American Catholic College Board of Trustees, Member
National Association of Catholic Chaplains (NACC), Episcopal Advisor
National Association for Lay Ministers, Episcopal Moderator
Saint Patrick Seminary and University Board of Trustees, Menlo Park, California
Zen/Ch'an and Catholic Dialogue, Member

USCCB Memberships

Communications Committee, Chair
Catholic Education Foundation Advisory Board, Member
Committee on Catholic Education, Member
Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, Consultant
Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life & Youth, Consultant
Committee on Migration, Consultant


International Memberships

Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant Peoples, Member


                                                     (Updated and written by S. Mares, 02/21/2012)