About Our Former Bishop

Bishop Richard Grecco

Bishop Richard Grecco

Bishop Grecco was installed as our thirteenth bishop on September 21, 2009 in St. Dunstan’s Basilica in the presence of the Metropolitan, Archbishop Mancini of Halifax, sixteen other bishops, sixty priests and a church filled with laity. He served our diocese until March 4, 2021 when having reached the usual retirement age of 75 his resignation was accepted by Pope Francis.

Born in 1946, our future bishop lived his earlier years in Holy Rosary Parish, Thorold, Ontario, within the Archdiocese of Toronto. In 1958 this area became part of the new Diocese of St. Catharine’s. Ordained to the priesthood in 1973 for service in the Diocese of St. Catharine’s, Father Grecco served in a wide range of ministries both within his own diocese and beyond. His last major appointments were as Auxiliary Bishop of London (1998-2002) and as Auxiliary Bishop of Toronto (2001-2009).

Bishop Grecco’s Coat of Arms

Grecco's Coat of Arms

Grecco’s Coat of Arms


The use of red, white, and green on the Coat of Arms refers to the Italian heritage of Bishop Grecco.

Further, green is also the colour of hope, red is the colour of the Holy Spirit, and white is the colour of purity and joy.

The Lily

The lily is symbolic of the Blessed Virgin Mary and is also the name of Bishop Grecco’s mother: ‘Lily”.

The Grapes

The grapes symbolize the Eucharist and refer to the vineyards of the Niagara Region.

The Shovel and Hammer

The shovel and hammer within the chevron symbolize the dignity of human work and the lifetime occupation of Anthony, Bishop Grecco’s father.

The Anchor

The anchor is an ancient symbol of hope and a reminder of the ships that pass through the Welland Canal Locks in Bishop Grecco’s home town of Thorold.

The “X”

The “X” on the anchor is the Greek letter ‘Chi’, the first letter in the Greek spelling of the word ‘Christ’, our source of hope.

The Motto

The motto is the final verse of Psalm 27 – “Hope in the Lord”.

Bishop Grecco’s curriculum vitae

  • July 11, 2009: Appointed Bishop of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
  • April 27, 2002: Appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Toronto, Ontario
  • February 2, 1998: Ordained to the episcopate at St. Catharines, Ontario by Bishop Thomas B. Fulton
  • December 5, 1997: Appointed Auxiliary Bishop of London, Ontario, and Titular of Uccula
  • 2004 – 2008: Vice-president of the Ontario Conference of Catholic Bishops (OCCB)
  • 1995-1998: Vicar General of St. Catharines
  • 1994-1998: Pastor of St. Alfred’s Parish, St. Catharines, Ontario
  • 1992-1994: Associate Professor of Moral Theology at St. Joseph’s College, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta
  • 1990-1992: Trustee, Greater Niagara General Hospital
  • 1989-1992: Pastor of St. Thomas More Church, Niagara Falls, Ontario
  • 1989-1991: Greater Niagara General Hospital Bioethics Committee
  • 1988-1992: Lecturer in Christian Ethics at the University of St. Michael’s College, Toronto, Ontario
  • 1986-1989: Ontario Separate School Trustee’s Association, Board of Directors

CCCB Commissions & Committees

  • 2009: National Council for Development and Peace
  • 2006: CCCB representative with the Pontifical Mission Societies
  • 2005: Member of the Episcopal Commission for Evangelization of Peoples
  • 2001-2005: Chairman of the Episcopal Commission for Christian Education
  • 1999-2001: Member of the Episcopal Commission for Christian Education
  • 1984-1987: Member of the National Advisory Committee on Adult Education

Ministry and Other Positions

  • 1981-1989: Director of Religious Education for the Diocese of St. Catharines, coordinating the Renew program for four years
  • 1981-1988: Lecturer in Theology at St. Augustine Seminary, Scarborough, Ontario
  • 1977-1981: Spiritual Director at St. Augustine Seminary, Scarborough, Ontario
  • 1973-1977: Associate Pastor, St. Denis Parish, St. Catharines, Ontario

Studies and Academic Degrees

  • Doctor of Theology (Th.D.) St. Michael’s University and the Toronto School of Theology, Toronto, Ontario (1982)
  • Licentiate in Theology (STL) Gregorian University, Rome, Italy (1972)
  • Bachelor of Theology (B.Th) St. Paul’s University, Ottawa, Ontario (1971)
  • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Ottawa University, Ottawa, Ontario (1968)