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Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley, OFM Cap. has named Msgr. George F. Carlson as regional vicar of the South Region of the Archdiocese of Boston. This appointment frees up auxiliary Bishop John Dooher to devote more time to his responsibilities as auxiliary bishop and as pastor of two Weymouth parishes: Immaculate Conception and St. Jerome.
Msgr. Carlson, a native of the Hub's Allston section grew up in St. Anthony of Padua Parish there. After graduating from Boston Latin School he entered St. John's Seminary and Cardinal Richard Cushing ordained him on May 21, 1966. His priestly ministry has been primarily in archdiocesan parishes: assistant at St. Theresa of Lisieux, North Reading (1966-1971); St. Theresa of the Child Jesus (1971-1975); Team ministry at St. Boniface in Quincy's Germantown section (1975-1983); parochial vicar, Sacred Heart, Roslindale (1983-1987); pastor, St Patrick, Lawrence (1991-2001); pastor of Holy Name, West Roxbury (2001-2017).
From 1987 to 1991 he was director of the Pastoral Institute, which was the umbrella for many programs related to ongoing formation of priests, especially the annual retreats at St. William's Hall. Pope St. John Paul II named him a Prelate of Honor on Jan. 25, 1998. He was granted senior priest/retirement status this past spring.
Bishop Dooher has been an auxiliary of the archdiocese since his episcopal ordination on Dec. 12, 2006. Prior to that he, like Msgr. Carlson, served primarily in parish assignments: as an assistant at St. Francis Xavier in Weymouth following his ordination on May 21, 1969 until 1974 when he was transferred to St. Augustine, South Boston. He was president of the Priests' Senate (1982-1984) and then assistant director of the Archdiocesan Office for Spiritual Development (1984-1991); then administrator of two South Boston Parishes: Sts. Peter and Paul and St. Vincent de Paul as well as administrator of the Chapel of Our Lady of Good Voyage. In 1996 Cardinal Law named him as pastor of St. Mary Parish, Dedham where he served until his ordination as auxiliary bishop in 2006.
Bishop Dooher has been facing some health issues in the past several years and this appointment of Msgr. Carlson is to give him more time to tend to those health needs and to the parishes of which he is pastor in Weymouth.