Today the Vatican announced two episcopal appointments for American dioceses; one for the Diocese of Buffalo, New York, and one for the Archdiocese of Denver:
Vatican City, 29 May 2012 (VIS) – The Holy Father:
– Appointed Bishop Richard J. Malone of Portland, U.S.A., as bishop of Buffalo (area 16,511, population 1,621,000, Catholics 716,000, priests 425, permanent deacons 127, religious 1,075), U.S.A. He succeeds Bishop Edward U. Kmiec, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese the Holy Father accepted, upon having reached the age limit.
– Appointed Bishop Samuel J. Aquila of Fargo, U.S.A., as archbishop of Denver (area 101.279, population 3,328,000, Catholics 549,325, priests 306, permanent deacons 184, religious 203), U.S.A.
Bishop Aquila will, of course, be assuming the position left vacant when Archbishop Charles Chaput was appointed archbishop of Philadelphia last summer. Aquila, who was ordained a priest for the Denver archdiocese in 1976, has served as bishop of Fargo since 2001.
CWR interviewed Bishop Aquila last summer and discussed, among other things, Aquila’s controversial reordering of the sacraments of initiation in the Diocese of Fargo. In March Bishop Aquila told Catholic News Agency that Pope Benedict had indicated his approval of the reordering during Aquila’s recent ad limina visit to Rome.
Today CNA has a video interview with Bishop Aquila, in which he discusses his new assignment: “I never, ever dreamed that I would ever return here. … And now in the Father’s providential plan and in his love, I’m now the archbishop.”