Rev. Msgr. Russell M. Bleich was born July 9, 1935, in Titonka, Iowa to Martin A. Bleich and Anna (Seiler) Bleich. Currently, Msgr. Bleich is recently retired from assigned ministry. He continues to serve the parishes and missions of the Archdiocese as needs arise.
His most recent assignment was as the Episcopal Vicar for the Cedar Rapids Region of the Archdiocese of Dubuque from 1999 to 2012. As Vicar he assisted the Archbishop in pastoring, teaching, leading and serving the people in the region of the Arch diocese while also serving as an advisor to him on matters concerning the welfare of the whole Achdiocese. Msgr. Bleich grew up in the small town of Miller, IA attending a one-room school house and with his parents and two sisters and worked in the family country store. He is a graduate of Garner High School, Loras College, The Gregorian University in Rome, Creighton University in Omaha and postgraduate work at the University of Iowa.
Msgr. Bleich was ordained in Rome in 1960 and became Associate pastor of St. Francis de Sales Parish, Ossian and an instructor and Principal of De Sales Central Catholic High School. He served as Superintendent of Education for the Archdiocese of Dubuque from 1967-1987. During this time he was chosen to lead national efforts in the implementation of the United States Bishops Pastoral “To Teach as Jesus Did.” His peers elected to serve as President of the Chief Administrators of Catholic Education of America.
Msgr. Bleich was appointed as pastor of St. Edward’s Parish, Waterloo, Iowa from 1987 to 1999 before becoming Episcopal Vicar. In 1987 His holiness Pope John Paul II appointed Msgr. Bleich as a Prelate of Honor, a Monsignor. Msgr. Russell Bleich will preach at all of the weekend Masses on Sept 29 & 30th. The Mission will continue Sunday and Monday evening at 6:30pm. Please join us!