House unanimously approves new chaplain

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The House has unanimously approved the nomination of the Rev. Patrick J. Conroy, a Catholic priest who now teaches at Jesuit High School in Portland, Ore., to be the next House chaplain.

Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said Wednesday that Conroy was the ideal candidate for the job.

Conroy, a 60-year-old native of Washington state, succeeds Father Daniel Coughlin, who retired last month after 11 years in the position.

Conroy is the 60th House chaplain. The duties include opening each session with a prayer, presiding over memorials and other ceremonies and providing pastoral counseling.

Conroy entered the Society of Jesus in 1973 and was ordained a priest in 1983. He has also served as a chaplain at Georgetown University.