Vatican City, Sep 18, 2020 / 05:30 am America/Denver (CNA).
Pope Francis accepted the resignation Friday of Bishop Herbert Bevard of the U.S. Virgin Islands after he was hospitalized and airlifted to the U.S. mainland for medical treatment.
“Regrettably, I have experienced some new and unanticipated medical conditions that unfortunately preclude my ability to continue to maintain my position in the Diocese of Saint Thomas,” Bevard wrote in a letter to the diocese Sept. 18.
“I have loved serving the People of God; the clergy, religious, laity and the entire Virgin Islands community in the Diocese of Saint Thomas and will treasure the fond memories that we share together. It is this same love and concern for them, recognizing my own limitations, that now compel me to make this request,” he said.
Bevard, who turns 75 in February, noted that he had already submitted his resignation to Pope Francis on July 6, before following up to request an immediate resignation in light of his medical conditions “so as not to inhibit the effective ongoing pastoral leadership and care of the Diocese of Saint Thomas.”
Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Washington to serve as the apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Saint Thomas until Bevard’s successor is appointed.