New Superintendent to start in July

Bishop Frank J. Dewane announces the appointment of Jesuit Father John Belmonte, as Superintendent of Catholic Education for the Diocese of Venice in Florida, effective July 1, 2020.

“I am very pleased that Father Belmonte will be joining the Diocese of Venice in this important leadership role,” Bishop Dewane said. “His extensive experience, skills and passion for Catholic Education will support the Diocese in its mission to continue providing the highest educational standards, while maintaining focus on Catholic instruction and identity.”

As Superintendent, Father Belmonte will be responsible for the Department of Education in the Diocese of Venice in Florida which consists of 15 schools; 4,777 students; the Office of Religious Education which supports the 61 parishes and 13,573 children and adults; as well as The Institute for Catholic Studies and Formation.

Father Belmonte received his B.A. in History from Marquette University in 1985 and after graduation entered the Society of Jesus in St. Paul, Minnesota, and pronounced vows in 1987. Father continued studies in philosophy and humanities at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. In preparation for ordination to the priesthood, he completed theological studies at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, Italy with a Baccalaureate in Sacred Theology in 1995.

Ordained to the priesthood on June 14, 1996 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1997, Father Belmonte completed a Licentiate of Sacred Theology at Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Father Belmonte enrolled in 1999 to an Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Doctoral Program at Loyola University in Chicago, which he completed in 2006.

Father Belmonte held several positions at Marquette University High School in Milwaukee, and St. Ignatius Preparatory High School in Chicago, Illinois, before joining the Diocese of Joliet, Illinois in 2010, where he served as School Superintendent.

The Diocese of Venice in Florida offers a superb education infused with Catholic values, teachings and traditions that are centered on Christ, rooted in the Gospel and alive with the Faith. This formation takes place in 10 elementary schools, four high schools, one special education grade school, and the Institute for Catholic Studies and Formation.

The Institute facilitates the need for both post-secondary professional development, as well as comprehensive, lifelong and systematic formation for adults. The Office of Religious Education, which supports the 61 parishes in the Diocese through catechetical leadership and guidance in the faith formation of Adults, Youth and Children, also falls under the supervision of the Superintendent of the Department of Education.

At this time, the Diocese wishes to gratefully acknowledge Ben Hopper, who serves as Interim Superintendent of Catholic Education while maintaining his role as Principal of Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School in Sarasota. Hopper has done an outstanding job of supporting Catholic Schools within the Diocese of Venice, providing leadership and guidance, as well as helping the schools successfully navigate the transition to virtual learning during the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Diocese is thankful for his valued contributions and looks forward to fully supporting him as he continues in his position at Cardinal Mooney.

Please join in welcoming Father Belmonte to the Diocese of Venice in Florida.