Bishop Richard J. Malone has named Father Peter J. Karalus as the new vicar general and moderator of the curia for the Diocese of Buffalo. A vicar general acts as deputy of the bishop, exercising administrative authority through the diocese.
Father Karalus has served as pastor of St. John Paul II Parish in Lake View since 2011. He had been serving as pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lake View and St. Vincent in North Evans for a year before the two parishes merged to form Blessed John Paul II. The name of the parish changed after the canonization of the much-revered pope. Previously, he had served as pastor of Epiphany of Our Lord Parish in Langford. Before that he had served as parochial vicar at St. Gabriel in Elma, and St. Joseph and St. Mary parishes in Albion.
A graduate of the University of Buffalo and Christ the King Seminary in East Aurora, Father Karalus was ordained in 1997.
Father Jeffrey L. Nowak has been assigned his first pastorate at Our Lady Help of Christians Parish in Cheektowaga. He had been serving as parochial vicar of St. Vincent de Paul, Niagara Falls, since 2015. Before than he served in the same role at St. John Vianney, Orchard Park, since his 2012 ordination.
Father Nowak also served as Canonical Administrator of Mary Queen of Angels School from 2015 to the school's closing in 2017.
Bishop Malone also named Father Robert W. Zilliox Jr., pastor of St. Mary Parish in Swormville. This comes just a year after being named pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Bowmansville. Previously, he had spent four years as judge and defender of the bond in the diocesan Tribunal.
Following his 2008 ordination, Father Zilliox was assigned to St. Mary's where he served as parochial vicar. In 2010, Bishop Kmiec named him an auditor for the diocesan Tribunal, which required further studies at Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., where he graduated with a licentiate degree in canon law.
Father Tomasz Wilk, OSPPE, has been named pastor of St. Stanislaus Parish in Buffalo. He replaces Father Mariusz Dymek, OSPPE, who has left the diocese.
Father Mariusz Sierhart has been named as administrator of Our Lady of Peace in Salamanca. He comes from the Diocese of Marquette, Mich.
Father James Vacco, OFM, pastor of St. Bonaventure Parish in Allegany, has the additional responsibility of vicar forane of the Southern Cattaraugus Vicariate. In this role, he will deliver messages from the bishop to the parishes in Southern Cattaraugus County.
Father Daniel Walsh, pastor of Holy Trinity in Dunkirk, has taken on the role of canonical administrator of North Chautauqua Catholic School for a term of three years.
The diocese welcomes a new group of Conventual Franciscan Friars to the area. Father Matthew Foley, OFM Conv. and Father Maximilian Avila Pacheco, OFM Conv., will live at St. Francis Friary and teach at St. Francis High School in Athol Springs. Father Charles Jagodzinski, OFM Cov., will live at Father Justin Residence and serve as chaplain to the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph in Hamburg.
Leaving the diocese are Father Joseph Bayne, OFM Conv., who ran the Franciscan Center for years, and Father Mark David Skura, OFM Conv..
Father Robert Moreno, pastor of St. Basil Ukranian Parish in Lancaster and chaplain of the Erie County Correctional Facility, has also left the diocese, as have Father William Allegretto, CM, and Father Paul Nourie, OMI.