Pope Francis appointed him yesterday. Hailing from the Diocese of Rajshahi, he says, "It is a grace from God for me to be entrusted with the responsibility of bishop."
Dhaka (AsiaNews) - Pope Francis yesterday appointed Fr. Emmanuel Kanon Rozario bishop of the Diocese of Barishal. Bishop. Until now he had been vicar general and pastor of Rajshani. "It is a grace from God for me to get the responsibility of bishop of Barishal," he told AsiaNews. "It is an opportunity to move from the diocese of Rajshahi to the diocese of Barishal and serve it as a local missionary."
"Being a small diocese, there will be challenges," Msgr. Rozario added. "But I will not be alone. I will work with everyone: priests, nuns, religious brothers, including Catholics in Barishal. I will carry out my task faithfully relying on God."
The diocese of Rajshani, founded in 1990, had as its first bishop Msgr. Patrick D'Rozario (now a cardinal) who came from Barishal. "We used to receive from others while now we give," explained the 59-year-old prelate.
Born Feb. 8, 1963, in Deirpara village, Failjana parish in Pabna, Rajshahi diocese, Msgr. Rozario is the fifth of six brothers and two sisters. He studied philosophy and theology at the Holy Spirit Major Seminary in Dhaka and was ordained a priest on Dec. 28, 1993. He completed his high school studies and received his license and doctorate in biblical theology from the Pontifical Universitas Urbaniana in Rome. He worked in the parishes of Bonpara, Borni and Kolimnagar and served at the Major Seminary as teacher and rector for 11 years.
The Diocese of Barishal was created by Pope Francis on Dec. 29, 2015 and is the eighth in Bangladesh. According to the Catholic Directory, 18,598 people reside there including a few dozen priests and nuns. Archbishop Lawrence Subrata Howlader of Chittagong served as apostolic administrator of Barishal for one year.