Learn More About Our Pastor & Our Bishop:
Monsignor Craig Harrison
Monsignor Craig F. Harrison has been a Roman Catholic priest since 1987. He was born and raised in Bakersfield, where he still resides today. He graduated from Bakersfield High School and attended U.C.LA., where he graduated with a degree in Business and Economics, with a minor in Psychology. He also attended the Seminary at St. Johns in Camarillo and received a Master’s Degree in Divinity.
Msgr. Harrison has been the Pastor of St. Francis Church in Mojave, and St. Joseph Church in Firebaugh. He is currently the Pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, his hometown Parish. He was honored to receive the title of Monsignor by Pope Benedict on May 11, 2008.
In his ministry of over 30 years, Msgr. Harrison has worked closely with families who have experienced the death of a child. He is both a parent and grandparent by adopting children before entering his ministry to the Priesthood.
Msgr. Harrison founded St. Faustina’s Maternity Home for unwed mothers and St. Vincent de Paul Homeless Center in Bakersfield. He serves as a Chaplain for The Kern County Sheriff’s Department and Bakersfield Police Department. He is a foster care advocate and is the 2010 recipient of the Bishops Award for Catholic Charities.
Msgr. Harrison is the author of “Angel Girl”, a children’s book based on a true story about a young girl who endured two years of cancer treatment “Pax Et Bonum” a book of Monsignor’s reflections on his journey through Assisi.
Bishop Armando Xavier Ochoa
Bishop Armando Xavier Ochoa was born in Oxnard, California, in 1943. In 1962 he entered St. John’s Seminary College and having graduated, continued his studies at St. John’s Seminary School of Theology. Bishop Ochoa was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on May 23, 1970, by Cardinal Timothy Manning. Bishop Ochoa was appointed Pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Los Angeles, in December, 1984. While an Associate Pastor at St. Teresa of Avila, he was named a Monsignor, Chaplain to His Holiness, in 1982.
Prior to his Ordination to the Episcopacy, in February, 1987, as Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and Regional Bishop of the San Fernando Pastoral Region, he served as a board member and later as co-director of the Permanent Diaconate Program for the Archdiocese. On June 26, 1996, Bishop Ochoa was installed as fifth Bishop of the Diocese of El Paso in Texas.
On February 1, 2012, Bishop Ochoa was installed as the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Fresno. The Diocese of Fresno has grown to comprise five deaneries in eight counties with 86 parishes. In addition, it has more than 40 mission churches and a number of mission stations.