Iligan diocese to welcome new bishop
ILIGAN CITY, Lanao del Norte, Philippines — The Catholic diocese here is preparing to welcome its new bishop, nearly two years after Bishop Elenito Galido died.
On June 13, Pope Francis named Jose Rapadas, the vicar general of the Diocese of Ipil in Zamboanga Sibugay to succeed Galido, who served the diocese for 11 years.
The Pope earlier named Dipolog Bishop Severo Caermare as apostolic administrator to oversee the Diocese of Iligan.
Rapadas will be ordained on Tuesday as bishop in Ipil town. At 47, he is the youngest bishop currently serving the Catholic faithful in the Philippines, said Msgr. Rey Patian, vicar general of the diocese.
Patian said the preparations for Rapadas’ installation as the diocese’s fifth bishop on Sept. 5 included the making of the coat of arms, his cathedra, or throne, and the selection of priests who would take part in the rites.
Papal Nuncio Gabriele Giordano Caccia, 20 bishops and around 200 priests from all over the Philippines are expected to attend Rapadas’ installation.
Government officials from Iligan City and Lanao del Norte province and representatives from the religious community are also attending the ceremony.
Ozamiz Archbishop Martin Jumoad will lead the installation rites for Rapadas. Jumoad’s archdiocese covers Ozamiz City and 14 towns and three cities of Misamis Occidental province, with ecclesiastical territories that include the dioceses of Iligan, Pagadian and Dipolog, and the Prelature of Marawi.
Patian said security would be tightened at the city proper of Iligan while telecommunication signals would be cut off from 9 a.m. to noon during the event.—Divina M. Suson
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