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Bishop McClory Celebrates 25 Years of Priestly Ministry

At 2 p.m. today (Friday, May 10, 2024) in the Cathedral of the Holy Angels, the Most Rev. Robert J. McClory, Bishop of Gary, celebrates Mass with fellow bishops, priests, deacons, family, friends and diocesan faithful in honor of his 25 years of priestly ministry. For those unable to attend in person, the Mass will be live-streamed and available on the diocesan YouTube channel.

Bishop McClory has served the faithful in Northwest Indiana since his ordination and installation as the Bishop of Gary on Feb. 11, 2020. 

When reflecting on the role of the priesthood, Bishop McClory said he has always done his best to bring people together.

“I try not to be a lone ranger in the parish or the diocese,” he explained. “I try to respect the insights of others and to empower them as they want to share their gifts.” 

He added he often calls to mind the word that Pope Francis uses, “accompaniment,” which describes how Catholics are to walk with each other in life situations, learning about the gifts and questions of one another.

“I think I’ve tried to lead but do so with a sensitivity to involving others around me,” said Bishop McClory. “We have outstanding laity in the Church in the United States who have talents and skills in their faith formation, and I’ve been blessed to be surrounded by some really good lay coworkers over the years.” 

Bishop McClory truly loves being a priest and encourages those considering a priestly vocation to “take it to prayer,” and talk with a trusted priest. “You give up a lot but what you get back is so much more,” he said. “It’s not a boring life, but a life of great fulfillment.”

Born in Detroit (in 1963), Bishop McClory earned a master’s degree in public policy and administration from Columbia University in 1987, and a law degree from the University of Michigan in 1991. He practiced civil law for three years before discerning to enter Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit.

Bishop McClory was ordained a deacon by Cardinal Edmund Szoka in St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome, on Oct. 8, 1998, and ordained a priest at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Detroit by Cardinal Adam Maida on May 22, 1999. He and was named Chaplain to His Holiness by Pope Benedict XVI and given the title of Monsignor in 2005.

In his years of service to the Archdiocese of Detroit, Bishop McClory served in many pastoral capacities and positions of leadership including Metropolitan Tribunal judge, administrative secretary to Cardinal Maida, chancellor moderator of the curia and vicar general for Archbishop Vigneron and rector of the National Shrine of the Little Flower Basilica in Royal Oak.  

Bishop McClory taught canon law as an adjunct faculty member at Sacred Heart Major Seminary and served on numerous boards during his time with the Archdiocese of Detroit. Bishop McClory also served as a consultant to the Catholic Leadership Institute. 

He is a Knight Commander of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a fourth-degree Knight of Columbus and serves as spiritual advisor to Detroit Team Eight for Teams of Our Lady, a marriage enrichment apostolate.

Bishop McClory is a member of the Board of Governors of the Pontifical North American College in Rome. He serves on the USCCB Budget and Finance Committee and the Committee for Religious Liberty.

Since his installation as the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Gary, Bishop McClory has embraced the vision delivered on that occasion on behalf of Pope Francis by the papal nuncio “to lead the people of the Diocese of Gary to be both disciples and missionaries.” 

In 2020, Bishop McClory guided parishes through the unprecedented challenges presented by the COVID-19 virus with ingenuity and encouragement to the faithful to be a light in the darkness. 

A principal project for Bishop McClory has been to reinvigorate the 2017 diocesan Synod by initiating Synod ‘21. Listening sessions were held throughout the diocese including priests, religious, deacons, parish leaders, multicultural representatives, youth and other faithful to discern areas of focus for the diocese. 

In response to these sessions, on Feb. 2, 2022, Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, Bishop McClory released, “We Proclaim Jesus as Lord!” – his first pastoral letter – on missionary discipleship. The letter has been used by parishes and Catholic schools to explore how the faithful can respond to their call to share the Good News.

Bishop McClory followed up with intensive visitations to all parishes in 2023-2024 to hear of parish progress on synod goals. The diocesan pastoral center was reorganized to emphasize missionary discipleship through collaboration and parish support to help the faithful grow in their call to share Christ in word and deed.


During his four years in service to the Diocese of Gary, Bishop McClory has guided Catholics in Northwest Indiana in matters of health, faith and spirituality. With a focus on the Eucharist and missionary discipleship, the bishop continues to spread the message that Jesus is Lord and to trust in Him.


About the Diocese of Gary  The Diocese of Gary serves an estimated 170,000 Catholics in Lake, Porter, LaPorte and Starke counties through 58 parishes, two missions and one Catholic student center. The diocese has 17 parish elementary schools and three diocesan high schools, serving 5,982 students, and one private Catholic high school. An additional 5,342 students are enrolled in parish Catholic formation programs. The diocese is home to two post-secondary institutions. More than two million are served by Catholic-affiliated agencies, including seven Catholic hospitals, residential and daycare facilities for adults and children, and centers for Social Services. Learn more at    -###-

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