Vatican City, Jan 10, 2017 / 08:45 am
On Tuesday the Vatican announced the appointment of Filipino-born Bishop Oscar A. Solis, currently an auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, as the new head of the Diocese of Salt Lake City.
Bishop Solis, 63, will fill a more than 20-month vacancy in Salt Lake City, after the previous bishop, John Charles Wester, was tapped to lead the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, N.M. in April 2015.
In an interview with L.A. diocesan newspaper Angelus News, Solis called his new role as the 10th bishop of Salt Lake City "a recognition of the diversity of the Church in America and the universality of the Church."
"I know what it means to be a pastor, a shepherd of a particular diocese," he said. "It is a tremendous blessing and a responsibility and a privilege to be of service to the local Church in the United States of America, coming from the Philippines."
In 2003, Bishop Solis became the first Filipino to be appointed a bishop in the United States when he was named as an auxiliary to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles by Pope St. John Paul II. He will now be the first Filipino to head a U.S. diocese.