Colombian Bishops Give Mediator a New Duty

BOGOTA, Colombia, JULY 6, 2005 (Zenit.org).- A prelate known for his mediation in Colombia’s internal strife has been elected the new president of the country’s episcopal conference.

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Archbishop Luis Augusto Castro Quiroga of Tunja was chosen Tuesday by 85 bishops gathered in their plenary assembly in Bogota.

The archbishop succeeds Cardinal Pedro Rubiano Sáenz, 72, of Bogota, who is ending a three-year term.

Archbishop Castro, 63, said he received the appointment with much faith and optimism, and added that he hopes to serve his country and the Church by dialoguing with all parties, according to the episcopal conference.

“My task at the head of the Colombian episcopate’s assembly,” the prelate said, “will be the promotion of peace and the defense of life, for which I ask the support of all so that a real process of dialogue can be created that will lead Colombia to reconciliation.”

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