Pontifical Acts - 19 january

Vatican City, 19 January 2015 (VIS) – The Holy Father has: - appointed Bishop Mario Toso, S.D.B., secretary of the Pontifical Council “Justice and Peace”, as bishop of Faenza-Modigliana (area 1,044, population 140,821, Catholics 132,259, priests 92, permanent deacons 11, religious 155), Italy. He succeeds Bishop Claudio Stagni, whose resignation from the pastoral care of the same diocese upon reaching the age limit was accepted by the Holy Father.

- erected the eparchy of Bahir Dar-Dessie (area 221,775, population 16,215,850, Catholics 17,544, priests 24, religious 47), Ethiopia, with territory from the metropolitan archieparchy of Addis Abeba, making it a suffragan of the same ecclesiastical circumscription. He appointed Bishop Lisane-Christos Matheos Semahun, formerly auxiliary of Addis Abeba, as the first bishop of the new eparchy of Bahir Dar-Dessie, Ethiopia.

- erected the metropolitan Church “sui iuris” of Eritrea, dividing it from the metropolitan archieparchy of Addis Abeba. The seat of the new metropolitan Church is Asmara, which is elevated to the status of metropolitan archieparchy. It corresponds to the territory of Eritrea and regroups the eparchies of Asmara, Barentu, Keren and Seghenity. He appointed Bishop Menghesteab Tesfamariam, M.C.C.J., formerly eparchal bishop of Asmara, as the first metropolitan of Eritrea.