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Wednesday, January 30, 2008


VATICAN CITY, 30 JAN 2008 (VIS) - The Holy Father:

 - Appointed Bishop John Tong Hon, auxiliary of Hong Kong, China, as coadjutor of the same diocese (area 1,102, population 6,882,600, Catholics 344,166, priests 283, permanent deacons 8, religious 811).

 - Reorganised the Greek-Catholic Slovak Church, making in a "sui iuris" Metropolitan Church and adopting the following provisions:

    - Elevating the eparchy of Presov for Catholics of Byzantine rite (Catholics 137,203, priests 259, permanent deacons 1, religious 111) to the status of metropolitan see and promoting Bishop Jan Babjak S.J. of Presov to the office of metropolitan archbishop. The archbishop-elect was born in Hazin nad Chirochou, Slovakia in 1953, he was ordained a priest in 1978 and consecrated a bishop in 2003.

    - Elevating the apostolic exarchate of Kosice for Catholics of Byzantine rite (Catholics 81,132, priests 161, permanent deacons 3, religious 65) to the status of eparchy, making it a suffragan of the metropolitan church of Presov, and appointing the current exarch, Bishop Milan Chautur C.SS.R., to the office of eparchal bishop.

    - Erecting the eparchy of Bratislava for Catholics of Byzantine rite, making it a suffragan of the metropolitan church of Presov, and appointing Fr. Peter Rusnak, pastor of the Greek-Catholic parish of the Exaltation of the Cross in Bratislava and proto-preist of the proto-presbyterate of the same name, as first bishop of the new eparchy. The bishop-elect was born in Humenne, Slovakia in 1950, and ordained a priest in 1987.
NEC:ECE:NER/.../...                            VIS 20080130 (250)

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