Leadership Team

Fr. Louis Arceneaux, C.M. – Secretary


Ordained 1966; Congregation of the Mission, Western Province USA

Louie Arceneaux is a member of the Congregation of the Mission, Western Province USA.  He was ordained in 1966. When asked what strengths do you bring to the Leadership Team of the Association of US Catholic priests, he answered: Knowledge of and passion for liturgy of Church; Knowledge and passion for peace and justice in Church and society.

Louie’s priestly experience includes years of teaching liturgy and sacramental theology in seminaries after receiving doctorate in theology from San Anselmo in Rome, as well as being active on liturgical committees in dioceses and working with AUSCP Task force to deal with the present Roman Missal. He is chair of the Peace and Justice Committee for his Vincentian province and a long time member of Pax Christi USA, as well as long time participant in peace demonstrations at the School of America in Fort Benning, Ga.

Fr. Gregory Barras – Chair


Ordained 1984; Diocese of Biloxi

 I am Gregory Michael Barras, a priest of the Diocese of Biloxi for thirty-five years.  I have been Director of Youth and Co-Director of Continuing Ed in our diocese.  I am privileged to serve on the AUSCP Leadership Team.  My love of Church is centered in Vatican II spirit.  AUSCP embodies, envisions, and lives this spirit.  As we follow Pope Francis, inspiration, vision, and mission give me life and desire to serve.

Fr. Mike Bausch – Vice-Chair


Ordained 1979; Diocese of Rochester, NY

Michael ‘Mike’ Bausch was born and raised in Batavia, NY, holds a BA degree from St. Bernard College, Cullman, Alabama and Master Degree from St. Bernard’s Seminary, Rochester, NY, and was ordained in 1979 for the Diocese of Rochester, NY.  Since 2002 Mike has been the pastor of The Church of the Transfiguration Parish in Pittsford, NY.  His previous assignments included parish ministry, he also has served as the Executive Director of both Catholic Family Center, Rochester and Southern Tier Office of Catholic Charities, Elmira, NY.  Mike has served on the Camp Stella Maris Board, DePaul Clinic Board, first Chair of the Diocesan Public Policy Committee, Development Committee of Catholic Charities of the Finger Lakes and Catholic Charities of Wayne County, Catholic Family Center (CFC) Board, Diocesan Catholic Charities Board, Diocesan Priest Personnel Board, Diocesan Presbyteral Council and numerous community agencies boards.  He was also a member of the New York State Catholic Conference Public Policy Committee and Catholic Charities USA Social Policy Committee.  He continues to serve, in an advisory capacity, the CFC Board and Catholic Charities Board and remains active on numerous community agencies. 

Fr. Simon Carian


Archdiocese of Santa Fe

Fr. Ray Cole


Ordained 1972; Diocese of Metuchen

I have had the happy experience of being involved in Social Justice Issues throughout my priesthood working in the inner city, in Appalachia and in Guatemala and rebuilding in Mississippi after Katrina. I collaborated with many parishioners of different ages to be a presence where there was need at home or beyond. We built several buildings and installed a solar farm and other environmental safeguards. We established a sister Parish relationship in Guatemala where the ministry continues on several levels.   I have served in many roles on the Diocesan level. I worked to enact things which AUSCP now is working on, especially collaboration. Gathering with priests to me is life-giving. Good Liturgy is a passion. I strive to grow spiritually and believe that prayer is essential for life.

Michael Hickin


Diocese of Fargo

Fr. Aidan McAleenan – Membership


Ordained 2005; Diocese of Oakland

I have served in many multicultural environments and love to celebrate the diversity that is our church.  I have served as the pastor of St. Columba Church in Oakland California for ten years. 

St. Columba is an African American community that celebrates African American Spirituality in the context of an increasingly multicultural demographic.  Social Justice is at the very heart of our community.  I love people and I am aware of my gifts and talents and look for complementary skill sets to help create a viable parish, and community teams in ministry.  I am a Vatican II priest at heart and I join with Pope Francis in his happy ministry of reinvigorating our church.

I am open to the Spirit of God working with all of God’s People! I love my faith and I love the church, the People of God!

Fr. Stephen Newton, CSC –  Executive Director & Treasurer


Ordained in 1989; Congregation of Holy Cross

Stephen Newton is a member of Congregation of Holy Cross, Notre Dame, Indiana. He serves as a Campus Minister at St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame. When asked what strengths do you bring to the Leadership Team of the Association of US Catholic priests, he answered: Creative thinking; persistence; faith in the Spirit; desire for authenticity; help others see in new ways.

“I consider status quo to be merely a step to what is next in any endeavor, including religion and spirituality.  So I am always looking for new ways to understand and proclaim the Word.  Often enough, therefore, I initially find myself on the margins rather than at the center of developments until persistence leads to understanding.  Then, it’s time to move on.”

“I have a special affinity for those who have been hurt by the institutional church, ministering primarily to others on the margins: homeless and addicted people; disaffiliated and minority groups; students and catechumens.  My approach has tempered through age and experience but thirst for what is right has not.  Some folks think my use of spontaneous humor can be very effective; some do not.”

Jeffery Ott, OP


National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus

Neil Pezzulo


Glenmary Home Missioners

Fr. Tulio Ramirez – Membership


Ordained 1990; Yarumal Missioners

Tulio Ramirez was born in Medellin, Colombia, where he was taught be LaSalle priests. He joined the Yarumal Missioners and was ordained in 1990. His ministry took him to Kenya (61/2 years), Ethiopia (9 years), and presently he serves as pastor at the Church of Our Saviour in The Bronx, NY, where he has served the Latino community for 13 years.

Tulio brings to the Leadership Team a broad missionary mindset of priesthood and extensive experience in working with other cultures.

Fr. Andy Switzer


Ordained 2011; Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston

Andy Switzer was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston in 2011 and currently serves as administrator of St. Sebastian Parish in Kingwood, St. Zita Parish in Masontown, and St. Edward the Confessor Mission in Terra Alta. 

Andy says that the journey we are all on in the AUSCP inspires him. He also said that he is honored to be a part of the leadership team, and feels that he can learn a lot from this group. “This is a group that is committed to the reforms of the Second Vatican Council and Pope Francis continuing that reform,” he said. “I think the role that the AUSCP plays for our church today is prophetic!”

“We have a lot to consider and feel called as Catholics to take a prophetic role in the direction of our country or as the Second Vatican Council in the church in the modern world says to make the joys and the sorrows of this world our own as a church,” he said.

Sr. Jackie Doepker, OSF – Executive Secretary


Sr. Linda Scheckelhoff – Office Assistant

Paul Leingang – Communications and Media