George J. Rassas

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George James Rassas
Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Chicago
Titular Bishop of Reperi
AppointedDecember 1, 2005
InstalledFebruary 2, 2006
Term endedJuly 3, 2018
Other postsTitular Bishop of Reperi
OrdinationMay 2, 1968
by John Cody
ConsecrationFebruary 2, 2006
by Francis George, Gerald Frederick Kicanas, and José Antonio Eguren Anselmi
Personal details
Birth nameGeorge James Rassas
Born (1942-05-26) May 26, 1942 (age 77)
Baltimore, Maryland
Previous postAssociate Pastor at Queen of the Rosary Church in Elk Grove Village, Illinois (1968–1974)
Associate Pastor at St. Genevieve Church in Chicago, Illinois (1974–1983)
Associate Pastor at St. Norbert Church in Northbrook, Illinois (1983–1988)
Associate Pastor at Sacred Heart Church in Winnetka, Illinois (1988–1990)
Pastor of The Church of St. Mary in Lake Forest, Illinois(1990–2004)
Vicar general of the Archdiocese of Chicago (2004–2005)
Alma materUniversity of Notre Dame
Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary
Niles College
University of St. Mary of the Lake
Loyola University
Styles of
George James Rassas
Coat of arms of George James Rassas.svg
Reference style
Spoken styleYour Excellency
Religious styleBishop

George James Rassas (born May 26, 1942) is an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church. He served as an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago.


Early life and education[edit]

The oldest of six children, George Rassas was born in Baltimore, Maryland, to George and Frances (née McGuire) Rassas.[1] His father was the son of Greek immigrants and converted to Catholicism from the Greek Orthodox Church while attending the University of Notre Dame on a football scholarship; he met his wife after sustaining an injury during a game and then being treated at Mercy Hospital by her father, an Irish Catholic doctor.[1]

The family moved in 1945 to Winnetka, Illinois, where they became members of Ss. Faith, Hope, and Charity Church.[2] Rassas graduated from Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary in 1961, and then attended Niles College and the University of St. Mary of the Lake,[3] from where he obtained a Bachelor's degree in philosophy.

Ordination and ministry[edit]

After serving as a deacon at St. Thaddeus Church in Chicago for a year,[4] he was ordained to the priesthood by John Cardinal Cody on May 2, 1968.[5]

Rassas served as an associate pastor at Queen of the Rosary Church in Elk Grove Village (1968–1974), St. Genevieve Church in Chicago (1974–1983), St. Norbert Church in Northbrook (1983–1988), and Sacred Heart Church in Winnetka (1988–1990).[4] He earned a Master's degree in counseling psychology from Loyola University in 1974, and a doctorate in pastoral theology from St. Mary of the Lake in 1984.[4] He was also director of the Catholic Family Consultation Service (1975–1984), associate moderator of the Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women (1976–1984), and director of the Office of Family Ministries (1984–1990).[4] Rassas was pastor of the Church of St. Mary in Lake Forest from 1990 to 2004, during which time he also served as chairman of the Archdiocesan Presbyteral Council from 1999 to 2002. In 2004, he became vicar general of the Archdiocese of Chicago.[4]

Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago[edit]

On December 1, 2005, Rassas was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago and Titular Bishop of Reperi by Pope Benedict XVI.[5] He received his episcopal consecration on February 2, 2006 from Francis Cardinal George, OMI, with Bishops Gerald Kicanas and José Eguren Anselmi, SCV, serving as co-consecrators, at Holy Name Cathedral.[5]

Rassas is the Episcopal Vicar for Vicariate 1, which includes Lake and Cook counties.[4] He is a founding board member and chairman of the Board of Trustees for Cristo Rey St. Martin College Prep in Waukegan.[4]

On July 3, 2018, Pope Francis accepted his resignation after reaching the retirement age of 75.


  1. ^ a b Martin, Michelle (December 4, 2005). "Pope appoints Rassas as Chicago auxiliary". The Catholic New World.
  2. ^ Martin, Michelle (February 19, 2006). "Ordination a family affair". The Catholic New World.
  3. ^ "Fr. George Rassas Ordained as Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago. February 2, 2006. Archived from the original on October 12, 2008.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g "Bishop George Rassas Biographical Summary". Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago.
  5. ^ a b c "Bishop George James Rassas".

External links[edit]

Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago
Succeeded by