Pope Benedict XVI Friday (1/14) signed a decree recognizing Western New York's Msgr. Nelson H. Baker for having heroically lived the Christian virtues and so is worthy of veneration.
Msgr. Baker was ordained in Buffalo diocesan priest in 1876 and served as pastor of Our Lady of Victory (now a basilica) in Lackawanna for more than 50 years. He died in 1936.
At Our Lady of Victory, Msgr. Baker ran soup kitchens and a hospital. He also set up homes for unwed mothers, homeless and troubled boys and abandoned infants.
Msgr. Baker can now be called "Venerable." The next step would be recognizing a miracle attributed to him - at which point he can be declared "Blessed."