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Father Michael Gutgsell installed as rector at St. Cecilia Cathedral

Archbishop Eden Francis Curtiss prepares to distribute the Eucharist to Father Michael Gutgsell, the new rector of St. Cecilia Cathedral in Omaha, at the installation ceremony June 19. Father Gutgsell moved from his position as pastor of St. John the Baptist parish in Fort Calhoun to pastor of St. Cecilia Parish. Photo by Brian Fuchser

By Brian Fuchser
The Catholic Voice

A new era began at St. Cecilia Cathedral June 19 with the installation of Father Michael Gutgsell as rector.

Prior to becoming the cathedral's rector, Father Gutgsell served the archdiocese in various capacities at the chancery for 23 years.

At the installation Mass Archbishop Elden Francis Curtiss praised Father Gutgsell's dedicated service to the archdiocese.

"I know Father Michael Gutgsell well," Archbishop Curtiss told the large crowd. "He holds the collective memory of the archdiocese in his head. No other priest in the archdiocese has his experience or track record."

Father Gutgsell, ordained in 1974, served as chancellor from January 1994 through June of 2003. In June of 1998, he added the role of moderator of the curia, a position he held until June 2005. He also worked at the chancery in various other capacities since joining the marriage tribunal as a judge in 1983.

Father Gregory Baxter, the new moderator of the curia, said Father Gutgsell's service at the chancery improved the efficiency of archdiocesan administration. Father Baxter has worked with Father Gutgsell at the chancery for the past six years.

"Over the last several years, Father Gutgsell has done a tremendous job utilizing the resources of the archdiocese and allocating them in an efficient manner to provide pastoral ministry to the people of the Archdiocese of Omaha," Father Baxter said.

Although Father Gutgsell has moved from the chancery to the cathedral, his work for the archdiocese as a whole is not over, Father Baxter said.

"I think Father Gutgsell's years of experience in the chancery will serve him very well as the new rector of St. Cecilia Cathedral," he said. "He understands the important role of the cathedral in the life of the local church."

During his homily at the installation Mass, Archbishop Curtiss also expressed his hopes for Father Gutgsell's new assignment.

"He is well prepared to be the pastor and rector of the cathedral parish," Archbishop Curtiss said. "He will provide steadfast and faithful ministry. I'm grateful that he said yes to me. It gives me much personal satisfaction and joy to install Father Gutgsell as pastor and rector of this church."

The Catholic Voice

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