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Pope Francis Picks Indian-American Earl Fernandes as Next Bishop to Columbus

At the age of 49, Bishop-designate Fernandes will be one of the youngest US Catholic bishops.

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Pope Francis has appointed Father Earl K. Fernandes to be the next bishop of the Diocese of Columbus, Ohio. He is a pastor in Cincinnati and a former staff member of the apostolic nunciature in Washington.

He replaces Bishop Robert J Brennan, who was named as the bishop of Diocese of Brooklyn, New York, last September.

Brennan officially took over his duties on 30 November.

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"Recognising my own unworthiness, I accepted, with fear and trepidation but also with joy, the appointment by Pope Francis to serve as the 13th bishop of the Diocese of Columbus," Bishop-designate Fernandes said in a statement on 2 April, as reported by America, a weekly Christian magazine published by the Jesuits of the US.

At the age of 49, Bishop-designate Fernandes will be one of the youngest US Catholic bishops, who was ordained as a priest of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati on 18 May 2002.

He also served at the nunciature between 2016 and 2019.

Bishop-designate Fernandes be the 13th bishop of Columbus and his episcopal ordination and installation will happen on 31 May at St Joseph Cathedral in Columbus, the America report added.

"We will miss his incredible intellect, unflagging energy and concern for all people, but know that these traits will serve him well as he expands his ministry to shepherd the faithful people of Columbus," Cincinnati Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr stated in reaction to Fernandes's appointment.

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