Ralph Leo Hayes

The fourth Bishop of Helena, Ralph Leo Hayes, served only a short time. His episcopacy ran from June 1933 until September 1935, when he was appointed rector of the North American College in Rome.

In the interim between the fourth and fifth bishops’ tenures, the city of Helena was struck by a series of devastating earthquakes that inflicted severe damage on the Catholic institutions of the city. St. John ‘s Hospital and St. Vincent’s Academy were destroyed. The inhabitants of St. Joseph’s Orphan’s Home and the House of the Good Shepherd were forced to seek temporary housing elsewhere while their buildings were repaired. The interior of the Cathedral was damaged but no structural defects occurred as a result of the quake. Pleas for relief went out to the bishops of the United States and by January of 1936, over $40,000 had been donated to the relief fund both from within and outside of the diocese.