Pope Francis has appointed the Rev. Austin A. Vetter of the Diocese of Bismarck as the Bishop-elect of the Diocese of Helena.
Father Vetter was born on September 13, 1967, in Linton, ND. He attended North Dakota State University (1985-1989) and pursued seminary studies at Cardinal Muench Seminary in Fargo, ND (1986-1989). In 1992 he received a bachelor’s in sacred theology (STB) from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum), Rome. He was ordained a priest in the Diocese of Bismarck on June 29, 1993.
Assignments after ordination include: parochial vicar, Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, Bismarck, ND (1993-1996); part-time instructor, St. Mary Central High School, Bismarck, ND (1994-1999); parochial administrator and pastor, St. Martin Parish, Center, ND (1996-1999); episcopal vicar for the permanent diaconate (1999-2002); pastor, St. Patrick parish, Dickinson, ND (1999-2008); pastor, St. Leo Parish, Minot, ND (2008-2012); director of continuing education for clergy (2008-2012); director of spiritual formation, Pontifical North American College (2012-2018); rector-pastor, Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, Bismarck, ND (2018-present).
The Diocese of Helena is comprised of 51,922 square miles and has a total population of 612,419, of which 45,400 are Catholic.