Bishop of Joliet diocese taking medical leave of absence

December 27, 2019 GMT

JOLIET, Ill. (AP) — Bishop R. Daniel Conlon is taking a medical leave from leading the Diocese of Joliet.

The diocese said in a statement released Friday that Conlon’s leave begins immediately. The statement did not provide more information on Conlon’s request for medical leave, which was granted by Pope Francis.

The statement said Bishop Richard Pates, who serves as bishop emeritus of Des Moines, will serve as apostolic administrator for the Diocese of Joliet. Pates, who is 76, retired in July after more than a decade leading the Des Moines diocese.

“I applaud Bishop R. Daniel Conlon for undertaking a program to address his health concerns,” Pates said in a statement. “He is a good bishop and will benefit from his time away.”

Conlon, who is 71 and a native of Ohio, was ordained in 1977. He was installed as a bishop in 2002 in the Steubenville, Ohio diocese and appointed to lead the Joliet diocese in 2011.

From 2011 to 2014, he led the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee for the Protection of Children and Young People.