Woburn native becomes new Archbishop of Hartford

On May 1, 2024, the Holy See announced that Pope Francis had accepted the resignation of Hartford Archbishop Leonard P. Blair, on having reached the age limit. With the acceptance of the resignation, Woburn native Archbishop Christopher J. Coyne, until then the coadjutor of Hartford, became the 14th bishop and sixth Metropolitan Archbishop of Hartford.

Archbishop Coyne was born in Woburn and attended its public schools. After graduating from Woburn High School, he attended and graduated from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He worked for a few years before entering St. John's Seminary. He was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal Bernard Law at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on June 7, 1986.

He served in archdiocesan parishes, on the seminary faculty, and in several central administration offices before serving as pastor at Our Lady Help of Christians Parish in Newton and then at St. Margaret Mary Parish in Westwood.

Pope Benedict XVI named him Titular Bishop of Mopta and auxiliary of the Metropolitan Archdiocese of Indianapolis on Jan. 14, 2011. He was ordained bishop on March 2, 2011, in Indianapolis.

Pope Francis named him the 10th bishop of Burlington, Vermont, on Dec. 22, 2015, and Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley installed him at the Cathedral of St. Joseph on Jan. 29, 2016. On June 26, 2023, Pope Francis named him Coadjutor Archbishop of Harford, and he was welcomed at the metropolitan cathedral on Oct. 9, 2023.

During his episcopal ministry, his concern and emphases have been broad, stretching from liturgy (in which he was trained after ordination), to communications, evangelization, and catechesis.

The new archbishop celebrated Mass at his new cathedral on May 5 and was seated for the first time in Hartford's cathedra.

On June 29, the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul, he will receive the pallium, an ancient symbol of the archbishop's office, from Pope Francis at a Mass in St. Peter's Basilica. The pallium will be conferred on Archbishop Coyne by Cardinal Christophe Pierre, the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Hartford on Monday, Oct. 14, 2024.

In a rare occurrence, the Archdiocese of Hartford now has living former archbishops. In the U.S., only San Francisco and New Orleans can make the same claim. Archbishop Coyne's predecessors are the Cambridge native Archbishop Daniel A. Cronin (1991-2003), New York native Archbishop Henry J. Mansell (2003-2013), and Michigan native Archbishop Leonard P. Blair (2013-2024).