Cardinal Donald Wuerl is the Archbishop of Washington and was elevated to the College of Cardinals in 2010 by Pope Benedict XVI.
He is known nationally for his catechetical and teaching ministry and for his efforts on behalf of Catholic education. He serves on numerous national and international bodies and is chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, chancellor of The Catholic University of America, chairman of the board of the Pope John Paul II Cultural Foundation and also of The Papal Foundation. He is chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Doctrine and a member of the USCCB Committee on Evangelization and Catechesis. He is the author of numerous articles and books, including the best-selling catechisms, The Teaching of Christ and The Catholic Way. His most recent book, The Mass, was published in January 2011.
In April 2008 Cardinal Wuerl hosted in Washington Pope Benedict XVI on the Holy Father’s historic journey to the United States. The Cardinal is also active in community activities, joining with civic and business leaders to promote education, service to the poor, pastoral assistance to refugees and immigrants as well as interfaith understanding.
The Cardinal was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and received graduate degrees from The Catholic University of America, the Gregorian University while attending the North American College, and a doctorate in theology from the University of Saint Thomas in Rome. He was ordained to the priesthood on December 17, 1966, and ordained a bishop by Pope John Paul II on January 6, 1986 in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Rome. He served as Auxiliary Bishop in Seattle until 1987 and then as Bishop of Pittsburgh for 18 years until his appointment to Washington. His titular (cardinalatial) church in Rome is Saint Peter in Chains (San Pietro in Vincoli).