Bishop Joseph Nunzio Latino

Bishop Latino
Bishop Joseph Nunzio Latino

Born: Oct. 21, 1937
Ordained a Priest for New Orleans: May 25, 1963
Ordained a Bishop: March 3, 2003
Died: May 28, 2021
Episcopal Motto: That All May Be One
Bishop Joseph N. Latino, came to Mississippi from the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux in Louisiana. When it was established, our diocese was placed under the care of the Diocese of New Orleans. Bishop Latino is our first native born New Orleanian to serve as our bishop.

Bishop Latino was the 10th Bishop of Jackson. A native of New Orleans, Bishop Latino was born on Oct. 21, 1937. He was the son of John Peter Latino and Theresa Rizzuto Latino. After completing his seminary studies and training at St. Joseph College and Seminary in St. Benedict, La., and Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, Bishop Latino was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of New Orleans by Archbishop John Cody in St. Louis Cathedral on May 25, 1963.

During his priesthood, Bishop Latino served in parishes in New Orleans, Metairie, Houma and Thibodaux. When the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux was established in 1977, he remained a part of the new diocese and served in many capacities there including: rector of St. Francis de Sales Cathedral, defender of the bond, chancellor, and Vicar General. In 1983 Pope John Paul II named him a Prelate of Honor with the title of monsignor.

He was appointed 10th Bishop of Jackson on Jan. 3, 2003; and was ordained a bishop and installed on March 7, 2003 in the Cathedral of Saint Peter the Apostle in Jackson. He retired on Dec. 12, 2013.

Bishop Latino devoted his ministry as bishop to fostering Gospel-based social justice initiatives, lay leadership, and vocations. During his tenure the office for Protection of Children was established to help insure a safe environment for children in our churches, schools and communities. Under his leadership the church implemented the new English translation of the Roman Missal.

In his retirement he continued to minister through quiet prayer and reflection along with the sharing of his wisdom gained from his 59 years of priestly service and his 83 years of life in Christ.