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Three local priests named monsignors





July 14, 2006

Three local priests named as monsignors

By LISA SCHULTE
The Catholic Voice

Three longtime priests of the Archdiocese of Omaha have been named Prelates of Honor of His Holiness with the title of monsignor by Pope Benedict XVI.

Fathers Nelson Newman, Robert Nienaber and Melvern Wiese will receive the Prelate of Honor diploma from Archbishop Elden Francis Curtiss at a vesper service Sunday, July 23, at St. Mary Church in Norfolk.

The public is invited to attend the 7 p.m. service. A reception is planned after the service.

Archbishop Curtiss recommended the three priests to the pope for their long standing and dedicated service to the people of Northeast Nebraska.

Father Newman is pastor of St. Michael Parish in Central City, Father Nienaber is pastor of St. Rose of Lima Parish in Genoa and Ss. Peter and Paul Parish in Krakow, and Father Wiese is pastor of St. Mary Parish in Leigh.

Father Nelson Newman

Born in Omaha in 1928, Father Newman attended Creighton Prep and Creighton University before completing seminary training at St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul, Minn., in 1954.

He was ordained June 5, 1954, by Archbishop Gerald T. Bergan.

His first assignment was as assistant pastor at St. Philip Neri Parish in Omaha. In 1961, he was named assistant pastor at Assumption Parish in West Point for one year, before being named pastor of St. Anthony Parish in St. Charles.

In 1968 he became pastor of St. Patrick Parish in Battle Creek, and two years later was appointed pastor of Holy Family Parish in Lindsay, where he served for 10 years.

He also served as pastor at St. Peter Parish in Fullerton and St. Patrick Parish in Elkhorn before being named to his current assignment in Central City in 1993.

Father Robert Nienaber

Father Nienaber, born in Lindsay in 1931, graduated from Immaculate Conception College Seminary in Conception, Mo., in 1963.

He was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Omaha May 25, 1963, by Archbishop Bergan.

For three years following his ordination, he served at St. Rose Parish in Omaha. Then, in 1966, he was assigned as assistant pastor at Holy Cross Parish in Omaha, where he served until 1968. He was at St. Cecilia Cathedral in Omaha from 1968 to 1972. He then served as assistant pastor at St. Peter Parish in Omaha for one year before being appointed pastor of St. Boniface Parish in Menominee.

After five years at St. Boniface, Father Nienaber was assigned as pastor of St. Anthony Parish in Cedar Rapids. In 1983 he became pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Norfolk, and 10 years later was appointed to his current position in Genoa. In 1994, he also was named to serve as administrator of the Krakow parish, where he's now pastor.

Father Melvern Wiese

Father Wiese has spent 38 of his 49 years of active priesthood as pastor in seven parishes in the archdiocese.

He was born in Howells in 1931 and attended Immaculate Conception College Seminary in Conception, Mo. He completed his theology studies at St. Bernard Seminary in Dubuque, Iowa, in 1957.

Father Wiese was ordained to the priesthood May 11, 1957, by Archbishop Bergan and was assigned as assistant pastor at St. Ludger Parish in Creighton. He served there until 1962, when he was named assistant pastor at St. Philip Neri Parish in Omaha. He then spent two years as assistant pastor at St. Bernadette Parish in Omaha.

In 1968, he was assigned to St. Peter Parish in Omaha for two months before being appointed pastor of St. Mary Parish in Hubbard. The next year he became pastor at St. John Parish in Petersburg.

Father Wiese was named pastor of St. Peter de Alcantara Parish in Ewing in 1971. Two years later, he returned to St. Ludger Parish in Creighton as pastor.

He became pastor of St. Wenceslaus Parish in Dodge in 1986 and remained there until 1999, when he was named to his current assignment in Leigh. During his 13 years in Dodge, he took on additional responsibilities when Sacred Heart Parish in Olean became a mission parish.

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