Statement of Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., on the death of Harrisburg Bishop Joseph P. McFadden:
I was shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the sudden death of Bishop Joseph McFadden of the Diocese of Harrisburg. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to be with him over the last few days at the Annual Spring Meeting of the Pennsylvania Bishops and spend time in conversation with him.
Bishop McFadden was a native Philadelphian and this diocese was always close to his heart. He served the Church in Philadelphia as a faithful priest and auxiliary bishop. His love for the priesthood was evident in everything that he did. He worked diligently to promote vocations to the priesthood and advance the mission of Catholic education.
Although he served as the Bishop of Harrisburg for only a short time, he effectively embraced the call of our former Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, to use new forms of media to proclaim the message of the Gospel. His service in our state capital was instrumental in fostering the teachings of the Church in the public square.
As all of us here Philadelphia mourn his loss. I extend the prayerful sympathy and condolences of the entire Church of Philadelphia to his family and many friends as well as the priests, religious and all the lay faithful of the diocese of Harrisburg. May God grant him the gift of eternal life, and give peace and consolation to all those who loved, admired, and respected him. In this Easter Season may we all find hope in the Resurrection of the Lord.