WASHINGTON—Rev. Alfred Baca from the Diocese of Orange in California, has been appointed as Executive Director of the Secretariat on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, based in Washington D.C.
“Fr. Baca brings to the Conference a wealth of knowledge and experience in the realm of ecumenical and interreligious dialogue, both at the institutional and at personal levels,” said USCCB General Secretary, Rev. Msgr. Brian Bransfield, who made the appointment. “I am very grateful to Fr. Baca for accepting this vital position in service to the bishops and to the Conference. I am equally grateful to Bishop Kevin Vann of Orange, California, for his tremendous support of the Conference and generosity in releasing Fr. Baca for this important service.”
Fr. Baca earned a Bachelor’s in Philosophy in 1985, and a Masters of Divinity in 1989 from St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, California. After his ordination to the priesthood in 1989, he served in various parish assignments before attending the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome, where he received a Licenciate in Sacred Theology with a specialization in Ecumenical Studies in 2006.
Since 2015, Father Baca has served as Pastor of St. Columban Church in Garden Grove, California. From 2009-2015, Father Baca served as the Episcopal Vicar for Ecumenism and Interreligious Affairs in the Diocese of Orange. Prior to that, he served as Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs Officer from 2007-2009.
Of his new role, Father Baca states, “In today’s world, efforts to heal the Christian family are more important than ever. Cooperation with the other religions of the world can only benefit the human family. I’m looking forward to collaborating with the Bishops and the USCCB staff in furthering the Church’s mission, especially in the work toward Christian unity and reconciliation.”
Fr. Baca is a member of the Catholic Association of Diocesan Ecumenical and Interreligious Officers (CADEIO). Until last year, Fr. Baca also served as a representative for CADEIO of the United States.
He will assume his role with the bishops’ conference beginning July 1, 2017.