WASHINGTON—Pope Francis has appointed Rev. David Bonnar, a priest of the Diocese of Pittsburgh, as the Bishop of Youngstown.
The appointment was publicized in Washington, D.C. on November 17, 2020 by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States. The Diocese of Youngstown has been a vacant see since June 2020 following the death of Bishop George V. Murry, SJ.
Bishop-elect Bonnar was born on February 5, 1962 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and ordained to the priesthood on July 23, 1988 for the Diocese of Pittsburgh. Father Bonnar attended St. Gabriel Elementary School and Seton-LaSalle High School. He received a bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh and studied at the Pontifical North American College in Rome where he received a Bachelor’s in Sacred Theology (STB) in 1987 from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.
After ordination, Father Bonnar was assigned to St. Vitus parish in New Castle as parochial vicar where he served until 1992 when he was assigned as parochial vicar at St. Rosalia parish in Pittsburgh. From 1992-1996, while assigned to St. Rosalia parish, he also served as the chaplain for Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh. From 1996-1997, Father Bonnar was parochial vicar at St. Thomas More parish in Pittsburgh.
In 1997, he was named director of vocations, director of the pre-ordination program, director of the diaconate office, and rector at St. Paul Seminary in Pittsburgh where he served until 2002. From 2002-2007 he served as pastor of St. Bartholomew’s parish in Pittsburgh. In 2007, Father Bonnar was named secretary for parish life and ministerial leadership for the Diocese of Pittsburgh. During that time, he also served as Delegate for Clergy (2007) and Episcopal Vicar for Clergy (2007-2009). In 2009, Fr. Bonnar was named pastor of St. Bernard parish in Pittsburgh and from 2018 to 2020, he also served as administrator of Our Lady of Grace parish in Pittsburgh. In 2020, he was named pastor of St. Aidan parish in Wexford where he currently serves.
Bishop-elect Bonnar’s ministry also includes service on the Diocese of Pittsburgh’s Post Ordination Board (1996-1999), Clergy Personnel Board (1997-2000 and 2003-2005), Seminary Admissions Board (2002-2009), chair of the Permanent Diaconate Admissions Board (1997-2002), chair of the Priestly Formation Board (1997-2002), chair of the Priesthood Candidate Admission Board (1997-2002), and executive secretary for the St. Paul Seminary Advisory Board (1997-2002), chaplain of the Serra Club (2004-2005), member of the Diocesan Pastoral Council (2004-2006), and dean of the East Suburban Deanery (2005-2007). From 2014 to present, Father Bonnar has been priest editor of The Priest Magazine. Since 2020, he has been a member of the National Advisory Board for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Bishop-elect Bonnar is fluent in Italian.
The Diocese of Youngstown is comprised of 3,404 square miles in the State of Ohio and has a total population of 1,182,309 of which 151,826 are Catholic.