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The Most Rev Thomas E Abel, DD
Bishop of the Catholic Church of America


His Excellency, Bishop Abelís Coat of arms shown below represents, in the upper right quarter of the shield, Saint Ambrose University, Davenport, Iowa, where Bishop received his preliminary training in the Seminary and under graduate degree. The bottom right quarter of the Shield represents the Dutch heritage of the Old Roman Catholic Church from the Archdiocese of Utrecht in the Netherlands. The upper left quarter of the shield represents Bishop Abelís German ancestry. The bottom left quarter of the shield represents the Church in San Diego by the waves of the Ocean caped by the Paschal Lamb; our Lord Jesus Christ. The motto in Latin is translated in English as; "We Adore Thee Oh Christ."

Bishop Abel is the third child of William and Violet Abel of Fort Madison, Iowa. He was raised and educated in the Roman Catholic Church.

Bishop Abel began his priestly training while attending the Seminary for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Davenport, Iowa at Saint Ambrose University where he received his Bachelors of Arts Degree in History in 1975. Bishop Abel left the Seminary and began his career in the secular world in the field of Human Resources.

Bishop Abel re-entered the Seminary of Saint Francis of Assisi; the Seminary of the Old Roman Catholic Church, English Rite, receiving his (STL) Letters in Sacred Theology degree prior to his ordination as a Priest in January of 1995 from Archbishop Floyd A. Kortenhof, of the Old Roman Catholic Church, English Rite at Saint Peters Episcopal Church, Chicago, Illinois.

Upon ordination, as a newly ordained Priest, Bishop Abel served as Pastor of Saint Mary Magdalene Parish in Lombard, Illinois, at the facilities of Calvary Episcopal Church for five years, a post he led until he relocated to San Diego in 2000.

Upon his arrival to San Diego in June of 2000, Bishop Abel started a new Parish for the Church; All Saints Parish. At its founding, All Saints parish began using the facilities of Saint Michaelís By-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Carlsbad, California. All Saint's Parish used the original building (the Chapel) of Saint Michael's, a structure dating from the 1800's. After his consecration on May 24th of 2003, also held at Saint Michael's By-the-Sea, he continued to serve as Pastor of All Saints Parish, Vicar General of the Church, and Auxiliary Bishop of the Vicariate of Saint Mary Magdalene of the Old Roman Catholic Church, English Rite, with offices located in Elmwood Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, under the leadership of Archbishop Floyd A. Kortenhof.

In May of 2004, All Saints Parish relocated to its current site at the facilities of Pilgrim United Church, Carlsbad, California. Mass is celebrated on Sunday afternoon at 5:00.

In July of 2004 Bishop Abel agreed to ordain the the Sacred Priesthood, the first female Priest of the Church and the current pastor of All Saints Parish; The Very Reverend Janine C. Stock, JD. At that time, All Saints Parish came under the jurisdiction of the Old Roman Catholic Church Diocese of San Diego with Bishop Abel as the Bishop of the Diocese. The name of the Church was changed in May of 2006 to the Catholic Church of America to reflect a broader view of the church in line with its mission in the world.

On November 6th of 2005 Bishop Abel opened Saint John the Beloved Cathedral. The Cathedral now uses the chapel facilities at University Christian Church, San Diego, CA. Mass is celebrated on Sunday at 11:30 in the morning.

Also in November of 2005 Bishop Abel commissioned the opening of a seminary to educate men and women in the ordained clergy as Deacons, Priests, and Bishops for the Church.. The new seminary is known as San Diego Theological Seminary, an Independent Catholic Institution.

Bishop Abel will provide instruction and training to the seminarians of this jurisdiction as well as any other Independent Catholic jurisdiction who chooses to enroll their seminarians. Instruction shall be provided on a distance program basis utilizing directed readings required by Bishop Abel along with approved theology schools throughout the country. Further, the seminary will allow the transfer of credits from accredited schools and colleges and, at the discretion of His Excellency, possible credit for life experience and independent study. More information will be forthcoming as the seminary develops its curricula.




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