Louis E. Gelineau is Bishop Emeritus of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence, R.I. He is the first Bishop of French-Canadian ancestry to serve as Bishop of the Providence Diocese.
Born and raised in Burlington, Vermont, Bishop Gelineau received his early education at St. Joseph’s Elementary School and Cathedral High School in Burlington. He studied for the priesthood at St. University in Ottawa, Canada and was ordained June 5, 1954.
Following his ordination, he served as assistant pastor for two years at All Saints Parish in Richford and one year at St. Stephen Parish in Winooski. He then entered the Catholic University of America, obtaining a degree in Canon Law in 1959.
Returning to the Diocese of Burlington, he was named Assistant Chancellor, Diocesan Director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith and Assistant Chaplain at De Goesbriand Memorial Hospital in Burlington. He became Chancellor of the Diocese in 1961 and was named a Papal Chamberlain with the title of Monsignor by Pope Paul VI.
In 1968, he was named Vicar General of the Diocese of Burlington and a Prelate of His Holiness.
He was named Bishop of Providence in December 1971. Bishop Gelneau has served on numerous boards and commissions concerned with church and civic matters and holds many honorary degrees from Rhode Island colleges and universities.
Bishop Gelineau requested retirement from the Office of Bishop in 1997, but continues to be engaged in pastoral ministry within the Diocese of Providence and beyond. He became the Chaplain at St. Antoine Residence in North Smithfield, R.I.