- Associated Press - Sunday, October 12, 2014

PHENIX CITY, Ala. (AP) - A Roman Catholic priest known to his Alabama parishioners as the “Pope of Phenix City” says he’s retiring from his two churches next month.

The 77-year-old Rev. Tom Weise says he will lead his last service at St. Patrick Catholic Church on Nov. 1 after serving as its priest for 17 years. He’ll stay on pastor of Mother Mary Parish until a successor is found.

The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reports (http://bit.ly/1tPaxcY ) Weiss has earned a reputation for political passion and humanitarian compassion during his nearly two decades in Phenix City on the Alabama-Georgia state line.

Priests typically enter retirement at age 75. Weiss delayed his to assist with $3.5 million in fundraising and rebuilding efforts for St. Patrick’s School, which burned in 2010 and reopened this year.

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Information from: Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, http://ledger-enquirer.com

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