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Lake County Priest, Fr. Michael McGovern, Named New Bishop Of Belleville Diocese

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Fr. Michael McGovern, pastor of St. Raphael the Archangel Parish in north suburban Old Mill Creek, has been appointed Bishop of the Belleville Diocese, replacing Bishop Edward Braxton, who is resigning.

Braxton, 75, was required by canon law to submit his resignation, due to his age. McGovern, 55, is expected to take over the Belleville Diocese later this year.

Fr Michael McGovern
Fr Michael McGovern has been appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Belleville. (Credit: Archdiocese of Chicago)

"We congratulate Bishop-elect McGovern on his appointment to the diocese of Belleville," said Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago. "He has served the People of God and the Church with humility and distinction for more than 27 years. We are confident he will be a strong and compassionate leader for the Belleville diocese, and we look forward to working with him."

McGovern, a native of Evergreen Park, Ill. attended Christ the King Grammar School and St. Ignatius College Prep. He graduated from Loyola University Chicago in 1986, and got his theology degree from St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelein in 1993, and his master's of divinity from St. Mary in 1994.

Before becoming pastor of St. Raphael the Archangel, he also was pastor of St. Mary Parish in Lake Forest, and associate pastor of St. Juliana Parish and Queen of the Universe Parish in Chicago.

Braxton has been Bishop of Belleville since 2005. Before that, he was Auxiliary Bishop of St. Louis for 10 years. He's also served as an associate pastor and pastor at churches in Chicago and the suburbs.

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Belleville Bishop Edward Braxton (Source: Belleville Diocese)

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