.- This past Saturday, Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Bishop William Weigand as the head of the Diocese of Sacramento. Bishop Weigand, who is resigning due to health issues, will be succeeded by Bishop Jaime Soto.
Archbishop Pietro Sambi, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, announced in Washington on Saturday that the Pope had accepted the resignation of Bishop Weigand who is 71 and has been battling an uncommon liver disease called primary sclerosing cholangitis for the last 27 years. According to the Diocese of Sacramento, Bishop Weigand underwent a living donor liver transplant in April 2005 and returned to full time work by November of 2005.
With the acceptance of Bishop Weigand’s retirement by Pope Benedict, Bishop Soto took over as the head of the Diocese of Sacramento on Sunday. Bishop Soto will celebrate two Masses on Sunday, December 7 at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in downtown Sacramento to celebrate his accession. The 11 a.m. Mass will be said in English and the 1 p.m. Mass will be offered in Spanish, according to the Diocese of Sacramento’s website.
Before coming to Sacramento, Bishop Soto served as the Auxiliary Bishop of Orange, California.
Jaime Soto was born December 31, 1955, in Inglewood, California. He attended St. John's Seminary College in Camarillo, California, and there earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy in 1978, and Master of Divinity degree in 1982. He earned a Master of Social Work degree from Columbia University in 1986.
He was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Orange in 1982, and was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Orange, March 23, 2000 by Pope John Paul II.
Bishop Soto's pastoral experience includes work in Catholic Charities, immigration reform and ministry to the Hispanic community.
The Sacramento Diocese includes 3,431,778 people, including 552,147 Catholics.