Rio Auxiliary Bishop Is New Secretary of Council for the Family

Swiss-Born Karl Romer Helped Organize 1997 Meeting with Pope

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VATICAN CITY, APRIL 16, 2002 ( John Paul II appointed Auxiliary Bishop Karl Josef Romer of Rio de Janeiro as secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family.

In 1997, Bishop Romer was president of the Organizing Committee of the 2nd World Meeting of the Pope with Families, which brought millions of people together in the Brazilian city. Bishop Romer helped organize the International Theological Congress on the Family.

Karl Romer, 69, was born in Benken, Switzerland, and left for the Archdiocese of São Salvador da Bahia, in 1965 as a Fidei Donum missionary.

Pope Paul VI appointed him auxiliary bishop of Rio de Janeiro in October 1975. Until now he has been president of the Brazilian edition of Communio, an international cultural review.

Bishop Romer has been a member of the Brazilian bishops´ Commission on Doctrine. He is replacing Monsignor Francisco Gil Hellín, who was appointed archbishop of Burgos, Spain, on March 28.

The Pontifical Council for the Family, presided over by Cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo, was established by John Paul II in 1981 to promote pastoral care and the apostolate in the family.

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