dimmerling_lgMost Reverend Harold J. Dimmerling

Fifth Bishop of the Diocese

Motto: “Keep the Faith”


  • Born September 23, 1914, in Braddock, Pennsylvania
  • Ordained to the priesthood, May 2, 1940
  • Ordained and installed as the fifth bishop of Rapid City, October 30, 1969
  • Died December 13, 1987; served 18 years as bishop


Dimmerling was a diocesan priest in Minnesota and served as a pastor and a hospital chaplain before becoming the spiritual director and rector of a seminary. During his tenure as bishop of the diocese, he implemented several offices and programs, including Rural Life; Stewardship; Social Concerns; Ministry to Separated, Divorced and Widowed; Religious Education; Catholic Social Services, and the West River Catholic newspaper. A permanent diaconate program and a lay ministry program were developed under his leadership. He ordained the first Native American deacon in the U.S. in 1975.