.- With the appointment of Father Juan Carlos Romanin, SDB, as the new bishop of Rio Gallegos, Argentina, Pope Benedict XVI has now named two Argentine bishops during his pontificate. The new bishop-elect will head up one of the most extensive and sparsely populated dioceses of the South American country.
Bishop-elect Romanin, 51, becomes the fourth Salesian bishop to head of the Diocese of Rio Gallegos, taking over for Bishop Alejandro Antonio Buccolini, SDB, who has reached the mandatory retirement age of 75.
Bishop-elect Romanin was born in the town of Sarandi on November 4, 1954. He took his first vows as a Salesian in 1971 and made his final profession in 1978. He was ordained a priest in 1981 and became a teacher of Philosophy and Salesian spirituality. Up to now he has been director of the Salesian Community in Mar del Plata, Argentina.
The Diocese of Rio Gallegos was created by Pope John XXIII in 1961 and covers over 164,000 square miles, with a population 300,000, 60% of which are Catholic.
The diocese has 28 parishes, 44 priests, 5 deacons and 88 religious. It also operates 20 schools.