Brooklyn auxiliary bishop resigns at age 76

Joe Bukuras   By Joe Bukuras for CNA


Bishop Raymond Chappetto, who retired as Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn March 7, 2022. / Courtesy of DeSales Media

New York City, N.Y., Mar 7, 2022 / 11:13 am (CNA).

The resignation of Bishop Raymond Francis Chappetto as Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn was accepted Monday by Pope Francis.

“It has been an honor and a privilege for me to serve for 51 years as a priest, 10 of those years as a Bishop, for the great Diocese of Brooklyn. I am grateful to our Holy Father, Pope Francis, and to Bishops DiMarzio and Brennan, for their support of my ministry,” Bishop Chappetto, said in a Mar. 7 statement from the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Chappetto, 76, was consecrated bishop and appointed as an auxiliary of the Diocese of Brooklyn in 2012. Bishops are required to send a resignation letter to the pope at the age of 75, which Chappetto reached in August 2021.

Chappetto had served as the Vicar General for the Diocese of Brooklyn since in 2013.

Chappetto was one of five auxiliary bishops for the diocese, which serves 1.5 million Catholics in 177 parishes in over 200 churches. Since November 2021 the diocese has been led by Bishop Robert Brennan.

“I share the appreciation of so many in the diocese for Bishop Chappetto’s many years of dedicated service here in Brooklyn and Queens,” Brennan said in the diocese’s statement.

“Personally, I thank him for staying on beyond the retirement age to assist with the transition, and to Pope Francis for allowing that,” Brennan added.

Bishop Chappetto was born in Astoria, Queens, in 1945. He studied at Cathedral College in Brooklyn, and earned master’s degrees from Our Lady of Angels Seminary in Albany and from St. John’s University.

He was ordained a priest of the Brooklyn diocese in 1971. Chappetto served many assignments in Brooklyn and Queens, including as Episcopal Vicar for Brooklyn West. He was made a monsignor in 1997.

Upon his episcopal appointment, Chappetto said that “The work of visiting the sick, as well as teaching in our parochial school and celebrating the Sacraments, has kept me grounded for the forty-one years of my priesthood.”

“Despite the greater responsibilities of my new office,” he added, “I intend to be faithful to those ministries which have been so nourishing to me these many years.”

The Tablet, Brooklyn’s diocesan publication, reported in 2016 that Bishop Chappetto told students at Cathedral Preparatory School and Seminary in Elmhurst that he discerned his priestly vocation through seeing how his parish priests served the people in his neighborhood.

When he saw the good works his priests were doing he said, “I too want to be a priest,” The Tablet reported.

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