We Joyfully Welcome Fr. Austin A. Vetter - Bishop Elect for the Diocese of Helena

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Dear Carroll College Community:

Today is a joyful day in the history of the Diocese of Helena and Carroll College. Pope Francis has named Father Austin A. Vetter, 52, the Rector of Holy Spirit Cathedral in Bismarck, North Dakota, as the eleventh Bishop of Helena. 

There is also a special Mass celebrating the arrival of Bishop-Elect Vetter at the Cathedral of St. Helena at noon today. All are invited to attend.

Bishop Vetter will be ordained Bishop and Installed as the eleventh Bishop of Helena on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, at the Cathedral of St. Helena. Details will be forthcoming. 

Bishop-elect Vetter is the youngest of twelve children, born in Linton, North Dakota, and raised on a farm nearby. He attended North Dakota State University and Cardinal Muench Seminary in Fargo, North Dakota, the Pontifical North American College and the University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome, Italy. He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Bismarck on June 29, 1993.

He has served at the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit (both as Parochial Vicar and most recently as Rector), as a religion instructor at St. Mary Central High School in Bismarck, as Pastor of St. Martin Parish in Center, North Dakota, as Pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Dickinson, North Dakota, and as Pastor of St. Leo the Great Parish in Minot. Among the roles he held for the Diocese are: Director of Permanent Diaconate, Director of Continuing Education of the Clergy, a member of the Presbyteral Council and a member of the Personnel Board. He held the post of Director of Spiritual Formation at the Pontifical North American College in Rome for six years, concluding in 2018, and then was named as Rector of the Cathedral.

I look forward to working with Bishop-elect Vetter who will serve as the Chancellor of Carroll College upon his installation. 

Please join me in offering prayers for our new shepherd, Bishop-elect Vetter, as he prepares for his episcopal ordination and installation as Bishop of Helena.


John E. Cech, Ph.D.