By Liz Sullivan
After more than 19 years away, Bishop Carlos A. Sevilla, S.J., has returned home to the Bay Area and is continuing his ministry in the Diocese of San Jose.
A Jesuit, Bishop Sevilla, 81, is the Bishop Emeritus of Yakima, WA. Late this summer, Sevilla left Yakima where he had served as Bishop for 14 years and Bishop Emeritus for five years and moved into the Jesuit House at Bellarmine College Preparatory School. Bishop Sevilla spends several days a week in the Diocese of San Jose assisting his long-time friend, Bishop Patrick J. McGrath.
“I am delighted to have him back in the Bay Area,” said Bishop McGrath. “It is a great privilege to have him here assisting me, especially with the Hispanic community.”
McGrath and Sevilla first met in 1988 when Pope John Paul II appointed both of them Auxiliary Bishops in the Archdiocese of San Francisco. The pair were ordained together in 1989 and a friendship ensued. In 2015, Bishop Sevilla spent two weeks in the Spring in the Diocese of San Jose assisting Bishop McGrath with the Sacrament of Confirmation.
“It is good to live in a Jesuit community and be close to home,” said Bishop Sevilla, a native of San Francisco, who has a Master’s Degree in Theology from Santa Clara University along with a Master’s Degree in Philosophy from Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. “I am really happy to be here and helping Bishop McGrath. I am very grateful for his friendship.”
Bishop Sevilla entered the Jesuit Novitiate in Los Gatos in August of 1953 after graduating from Saint Ignatius High School in San Francisco. On June 3, 1966, Bishop Sevilla was ordained a Jesuit Priest.
“I always wanted to be a Jesuit,” said Bishop Sevilla. “I wasn’t sure I wanted to be a priest. I thought I would give it a try. There is a real sense of being a part of serving God and serving the Church.”
In addition to his work with the Diocese of San Jose, Bishop Sevilla is very active as a spiritual director, director of retreats and conferences, as well the Episcopal Advisor for the National Cursillo Movement. According to its website, “Cursillos in Christianity is a Movement which, by its own Method, attempts from within the Church, to give life to the essential Christian truths in the singularity, originality and creativity of the person.”
Since 2004, Bishop Sevilla has been a member of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Sub-Committee for Worship in Spanish.
And Bishop Sevilla has no plans for slowing down.
“I have had a blessed life,” he said. “It certainly has had its challenges. I think this is where God wants me to be.”