The Roman Catholic community mourns the death of Bishop-Emeritus Robert Brom, who passed away in his home Monday at the age of 83 after 23 years as a religious leader in San Diego and Imperial counties.
A funeral for Broom is scheduled for May 17. at 11 a.m., at Saint Thérèse of Carmel Church in Del Mar Heights. Burial will be at Holy Cross Cemetery. The San Diego-Imperial Diocese made the announcement.
The cause of death was not immediately announced.
Broom oversaw the construction of many churches. He was responsible for the creation of Mater Dei Catholic High School in Chula Vista, replacing Marian Catholic High School in Imperial Beach, and Cathedral Catholic High School in Carmel Valley, California, replacing the University of San Diego High School.
“He was a natural teacher who constantly labored to bring the ecclesiology of the second Vatican council into the heart of the Diocese of San Diego,'' San Diego Catholic Bishop Robert McElroy said in announcing the death. “This dedication to the council also framed his life-long service in forming men for the priesthood.
“Bishop Brom's deep love for our parishes and pastoral vision was complemented by a keen administrative capability in guiding San Diego through years of joy and hardship. In his retirement years, Bishop Brom intensified the prison ministry that he began as bishop and his service to the Missionaries of Charity.''
Bishop Robert Brom was born in Arcadia, Wis., on Sept.18, 1938. He was ordained a priest of the Winona, Minn., diocese on Dec. 18, 1963. In 1983 Saint John Paul appointed him to be the bishop of Duluth, and then to be Coadjutor Bishop of San Diego on April 22, 1989. Bishop Brom became Bishop of San Diego on July 10, 1990, and retired on Sept. 18, 2013, his 75th birthday.
Catholic bishops are required to step down as of their 75th birthday.
In 2007, Brom approved the second-highest settlement in the U.S. for priest sex abuse cases, $198.1 million for 144 victims. The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the diocese filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, the largest diocese in the United States to file for such protection.