The Pope could not have made a better choice as his new head of Vatican outreach to the laity, a promotion announced today. In 2007, Bishop Kevin Farrell came to a nearly ruined Dallas diocese that had suffered for 17 years under Charles Grahmann, whose tenure was characterized by scandal, stupidity, petty authoritarianism, and financial ruin.
Farrell’s coming was like the bright sunshine of a new dawn. Affable, competent, and open-minded, he set about to repair the damage with a shrewd combination of patience, political sensitivity, and personal vigor that will serve him well in the Curia. He leaves the Dallas Diocese in better shape than it has been in decades.
I predict that as an Irishman (he was born in Dublin) who speaks fluent Italian and has spent his career in the U.S., Farrell will make the perfect Roman. I look forward to his restaurant recommendations.