Pope Francis names Camarines Sur priest as new Virac bishop

Pope Francis names Camarines Sur priest as new Virac bishop

By: - Correspondent / @RAOstriaINQ
/ 05:33 PM March 01, 2024

Bishop-elect Luisito Occiano of the Diocese of Virac. SCREENSHOT FROM ARCHDIOCESAN SHRINE OF ST. JOSEPH VIDEOLEGAZPI CITY—Pope Francis has appointed the Rev. Luisito Occiano, a parish priest from San Jose town in Camarines Sur, as the third bishop of the Diocese of Virac.

The Archdiocese of Caceres announced that the appointment was made public at the Vatican City on Thursday, Feb. 29.

Occiano will replace 76-year-old Bishop Manolo de los Santos, who is set to retire on an unspecified date. According to Catholic canon law, the retirement age for a diocesan bishop is 75.


De los Santos has been the bishop of the Diocese of Virac since August 1994.


As the rector and parish priest of the Archdiocesan Shrine and Parish of St. Joseph, Occiano also serves as the director of the Caceres Commission on Communications.

Occiano was ordained as a priest on Nov. 10, 1996, at the age of 25.

The Diocese of Virac, which has jurisdiction over the Catholic churches in the island province of Catanduanes, has over 260,000 parishioners.

Before its establishment in May 1974, it was part of the Diocese of Legazpi and was under the leadership of then-Bishop Jose Crisologo Sorra.

READ: Pope Francis appoints Filipino bishop in Philadelphia

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TAGS: Diocese of Virac

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