On May 23, 2022, Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Russell as the 31st auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Detroit, serving under the jurisdiction of Archbishop Vigneron. He was welcomed to the archdiocese during a Liturgy of Welcome and Inauguration of Ministry on July 7, 2022.
Archbishop Russell, born in Greenfield, MA, was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston on June 20, 1987.
In 1993, while serving as priest-secretary to the Cardinal-Archbishop of Boston, then-Father Russell was asked to enter the diplomatic service of the Holy See, and was sent to study at the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy in Rome, which trains Vatican diplomats.
After graduating from the academy, as well as earning his doctorate in canon law from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, he began working in the diplomatic service in 1997. His assignments included ministry in the apostolic nunciatures to Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti, Turkey, Switzerland, and as Chargé d’Affaires of the Vatican's presence in Taiwan.
On March 19, 2016, Pope Francis announced he was naming then-Monsignor Russell as apostolic nuncio — the Vatican’s top ambassador — to Turkey and Turkmenistan, an assignment that carried with it his elevation to the episcopate. At the same time, the pope named him titular bishop of Novi, Montenegro.
Archbishop Russell was ordained and consecrated a bishop on June 3, 2016, by Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston. Among his two co-consecrators were Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit and Archbishop Leo Cushley of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Scotland. In 2018, Pope Francis added Azerbaijan to Archbishop Russell’s responsibilities as nuncio.
- Born: May 2, 1959 (Greenfield, Massachusetts)
- Ordained Priest: June 20, 1987
- Appointed Titular Archbishop of Novi and Apostolic Nuncio to Turkey, Turkemistan: March 19, 2016
- Ordained Titular Archbishop of Novi: June 3, 2016
- Named 31st Auxiliary Bishop of Detroit: May 23, 2022
- Began Ministry as 31st Auxiliary Bishop of Detroit: July 7, 2022