Bishop-elect Izen reflects as he prepares for April ordination
It’s been a busy month for Bishop-elect Michael Izen after Pope Francis appointed him as…
It’s been a busy month for Bishop-elect Michael Izen after Pope Francis appointed him as an auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese. The announcement was made Jan. 5.
“I manage to make (sleep) a priority still, but there’s so much going on,” Bishop-elect Izen — pastor of the churches of St. Mary and St. Michael in Stillwater — said to “Practicing Catholic” radio show host Patrick Conley.
With some time having passed to allow the announcement to sink in, Bishop-elect Izen said “gratitude would be probably the first word” to describe what he’s feeling. He is also leaning into prayer and is anticipating a canonical retreat in March. He said he’s grateful for the prayers of others, telling Conley, “I’ve never had so many people praying for me than I’ve had in the last few weeks.”
Having talked with people about how much he’s enjoyed spending time with students through the years, most recently in Stillwater, he mentioned to Conley that he’s looking forward to Catholic school visits, to “going into a new school where (there’s) a whole new set of student body, to be able to meet them.” He and Archbishop Bernard Hebda have also discussed other areas to focus on “but nothing has been quite ironed out” at this stage, Bishop-Elect Izen said.
Reflecting on all that brought him to this moment, Bishop-elect Izen said the call to be a priest first “entered my heart, I would say it was second grade, probably around the time of first Communion.” He said that at one point as a boy growing up in Fairmont he made a little model church out of an empty box. He cut out holes and placed his mother’s holy cards inside, to act as stained-glass windows. He added Scrabble tile racks to act as pews and placed his action figures inside. “So it was early,” Bishop-elect Izen said, when he first became interested in religious life.
To hear the full interview, listen to this episode of “Practicing Catholic,” which debuts at 9 p.m. Feb. 3 on Relevant Radio 1330 AM and repeats at 1 p.m. Feb. 4 and 2 p.m. Feb. 5. Listen to interviews after they have aired at PracticingCatholicShow.com or choose a streaming platform at anchor.fm/practicing-catholic-show.
Produced by Relevant Radio and the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the latest show also includes an interview with registered nurse Dianne Johnson, founder of the Curatio apostolate, and Father Andrew Jaspers, its chaplain, who describe the upcoming World Day of the Sick Mass at Transfiguration in Oakdale Feb. 11; and a reprised interview with Joe Pribyl, a Minnesota-based licensed marriage and family therapist, who describes Valentine’s Day as an opportunity for couples to focus on their relationship.
Bishop-elect Izen’s episcopal ordination Mass will be 1 p.m. April 11 at the Cathedral of St. Paul in St. Paul. More information can be found online at archspm.org/episcopal-ordination-bishop-elect-izen/.
Category: Practicing Catholic