(Ottawa -- CCCB) His Holiness Pope John Paul II on Saturday named Most Rev. Vital Massé, as Bishop of Mont Laurier, Québec, and Rev. Luc A. Bouchard as Bishop of Saint Paul, Alberta.
Bishop Massé, who was Auxiliary Bishop in Saint Jérôme, succeeds Most Rev. Jean Gratton whose resignation was accepted by the Holy Father for reasons of age. Born in Saint Barthélémy, Québec, in 1936, he studied at the Grand Séminaire de Montréal and was ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Joliette in 1962. He obtained a doctorate in theology in Rome and then taught at the Séminaire de Joliette, the Diocesan Centre in Joliette, and served as pastor in two parishes. He was named Auxiliary Bishop of Saint Jérôme in 1993. Bishop-elect Bouchard has been Rector of Saint Joseph Seminary in Edmonton since last year. He succeeds Most Rev. Thomas Collins who became Archbishop of Edmonton in 1999. Archbishop Collins had since then also been named Apostolic Administrator of Saint Paul.
Born in 1949 in Cornwall, Ontario, Bishop-elect Bouchard was ordained to the priesthood in 1976, studied Scripture in Rome and Jerusalem, served in many parishes in the diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall, and taught at the Grand Séminaire de Montréal and Saint Joseph Seminary in Edmonton.
Bishop Vital Massé
Bishop-elect Luc A. Bouchard
The Diocese of Saint Paul has a Catholic population of 53.000 served by 24 diocesan priests, 3 religious order priests, a permanent deacon and 17 religious sisters in 23 parishes and missions.
The Diocese of Mont Laurier has a Catholic population of 72,000 served by 40 diocesan priests, 19 religious order priests and 81 religious sisters and brothers in 58 parishes and missions.
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Deacon William Kokesch
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