DUBUQUE, Iowa - One of Pope Francis' first appointments since assuming the Papacy last month included naming Bishop Michael Jackels as the next Archbishop of Dubuque.
Current Archbishop Jerome Hanus is stepping down for health reasons. He'll stay on the job until May 30th when Jackels takes over.
At a press conference Monday morning, Hanus said once he leaves his post he'll resume his life as a monk at the Conception Abbey in northwest Missouri. Hanus said his response to the immigration raid in Postville, sexual abuse scandals and the church's response to flooding in Cedar Rapids among his achievements that he wants to be remembered for.
Hanus was injured in a car accident last year and said the accident has made his arthritis worse.
Hanus said he hopes people remember him for how he handled the hard times in the Catholic Church. Including the sexual abuse of children.
Hanus said, "especially the victims and their families. I think the emphasis on responding to those who have been hurt has been strong. "
Hanus says he's confident Jackels will be a strong, organized leader.
Jackels comes from the Archdiocese of Wichita, Kansas. That's where all members of the church pay to operate the Catholic Schools.
"The Catholic School is not a private academy for only those who can afford it. But rather it's of the church's mission or ministry. "
Jackels says he will explore that system as an option here.
"All the people throughout the diocese take responsibility for the education of the next generation. "
The 58-year old is one of Pope Francis's first appointments. But it was Pope emeritus Benedict who Jackels worked directly with for 8 years.
"It's not like were like that or we were out drinking beers after work but he knows me, I know him, " Jackels said.