Edward James Slattery
Bishop Emeritus of Tulsa
ArchdioceseOklahoma City
AppointedNovember 11, 1993
InstalledJanuary 6, 1994
Term endedMay 13, 2016
PredecessorEusebius J. Beltran
SuccessorDavid Konderla
OrdinationApril 26, 1966
by John Patrick Cody
ConsecrationJanuary 6, 1994
by Pope John Paul II, Giovanni Battista Re, and Josip Uhač
Personal details
Edward James Slattery

(1940-08-11) August 11, 1940 (age 81)
DenominationRoman Catholic
ResidenceTulsa, Oklahoma
ParentsWilliam Edward Slattery and Winifred Margaret Brennan
(You alone are the Holy One)
Styles of
Edward James Slattery
Coat of arms of Edward James Slattery.svg
Reference style
Spoken styleYour Excellency
Religious styleBishop

Edward James Slattery (born August 11, 1940) is an American prelate of the Roman Catholic Church who served as bishop of the Diocese of Tulsa in Oklahoma from 1993 to 2016.


Early life

The second of seven children, Edward Slattery was born in Chicago, Illinois, to William Edward and Winifred Margaret (née Brennan) Slattery;[1] both his paternal and maternal grandparents emigrated to the United States from Ireland.[2]

After attending Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Grade School and Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago, Slattery studied at St. Mary of the Lake Seminary in Mundelain, Illinois, obtaining Bachelor of Arts and Master of Divinity degrees.[1]


Slattery was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal John Cody on April 26, 1966.[3] After his ordination, Slattery served as associate pastor of St. Jude the Apostle Parish in South Holland, Illinois, until 1971.[1] During this time, he also earned a Master's degree from Loyola University. He served as vice-president (1971–76) and president (1976–94) of the Catholic Church Extension Society.[1] While working at Extension, he was named associate pastor of St. Rose of Lima Parish in Chicago in 1973.[1] He served as pastor of St. Rose of Lima from 1976 to 1989.[1]

Bishop of Tulsa

On November 11, 1993, Pope John Paul II appointed Slattery as the third bishop of the Diocese pf Tulsa. He was consecrated by Pope John Paul II on January 6, 1994, with Archbishops Giovanni Re and Josip Uhac serving as co-consecrators, in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.[3] Slattery selected as his episcopal motto: "Tu Solus Sanctus", meaning, "You alone are the Holy One."[2]


Pope Francis accepted Slattery's letter of resignation as bishop of Tulsa on May 13, 2016, appointing Father David Konderla to succeed him.[4]


Illegal immigrants

In 2006, Slattery said that if a law was passed criminalizing the act of aiding undocumented immigrants, "then [he] will become a criminal," adding,

"When it becomes a crime to love the poor and serve their needs, then I will be the first to go to jail for this crime, and I pray that every priest and every deacon in this diocese will have the courage to walk with me into that prison."[5]

In 2007, Slattery issued a 21-page pastoral letter in which he condemned Oklahoma House Bill 1804, a strict anti-illegal immigration law which Slattery claimed creates "an atmosphere of repression and terror."[6]


During the 2008 U.S. presidential election, Slattery criticized the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then U.S. Senator Joe Biden both Catholics, for their remarks on abortion rights for women on the TV program Meet the Press. Slattery described their positions as "clearly inconsistent with Catholic teaching" and "plainly false."[7]


Slattery was a conservative on question of liturgical practice. He returned to the practice of celebrating the eucharistic liturgy in his cathedral using the ancient style in which the priest and the congregation face the same direction, ad orientem. He believed this form had a number of advantages over the form of in which the priest faces the congregation.[8]

On April 24, 2010, Slattery celebrated high mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., to mark the fifth anniversary of Pope Benedict XVI's papacy, wearing the rarely seen cappa magna.[9]

Statement on Contraceptive mandates

On February 2, 2012, Bishop Slattery released a statement in response to the contraceptive mandates issued by the United States Department of Health and Human Services under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Slattery joined other bishops in the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in opposing the mandate.[10]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Biography". Roman Catholic Diocese of Tulsa. Archived from the original on October 28, 2010. Retrieved June 18, 2009.
  2. ^ a b "Coat of Arms". Roman Catholic Diocese of Tulsa. Archived from the original on October 28, 2010. Retrieved June 18, 2009.
  3. ^ a b "Bishop Edward James Slattery". Catholic-Hierarchy.org.[self-published source]
  4. ^ "New Bishop Named by Catholic Diocese of Tulsa". Tulsa World. May 13, 2016. Retrieved May 13, 2016.
  5. ^ Zapor, Patricia (April 3, 2006). "Calls for prayer, rallies, boycott mark immigration debate". Catholic News Service. Archived from the original on October 7, 2008. Retrieved June 18, 2009.
  6. ^ Budde, Michael L. (August 1, 2011). "Chapter 5 - Border Crossings: Immigration through an Ecclogiological Lens". The Borders of Baptism: Identities, Allegiances, and the Church. Wipf and Stock Publishers. ISBN 978-1-62189-289-2.
  7. ^ Palmo, Rocco (September 8, 2008). "The Absolute Duty". Whispers in the Loggia.
  8. ^ Coday, Dennis (August 28, 2009). "Okla. bishop no longer faces people at Mass". National Catholic Reporter. Retrieved May 13, 2016.
  9. ^ Szczepanowski, Richard (April 26, 2010). "'Look mercifully upon thy servant, Benedict' people pray at basilica high Mass". National Catholic Reporter. Catholic News Service. Retrieved May 13, 2016.
  10. ^ "Bishop Slattery's statement in response to HHS mandate". Archived from the original on February 28, 2012. Retrieved March 22, 2012.

Episcopal succession