Pope Francis named Bishop Ronald W. Gainer of the Diocese of Lexington, Kentucky, bishop of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Pope also named Msgr. Myron J. Cotta, vicar general of the Diocese of Fresno, California, as auxiliary bishop of Sacramento, California.
The appointments were publicized in Washington on Friday by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, apostolic nuncio to the United States.
Ronald Gainer was born August 24, 1947, in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. He studied at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Overbrook, Pennsylvania, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1969 and master of divinity degree in 1973. He received a licentiate degree in Canon Law from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 1986. He was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Allentown, Pennsylvania, on May 19, 1973. He was named a prelate of honor (monsignor) to Pope John Paul II on August 20, 1991.
He was named second bishop of Lexington on December 13, 2002, and ordained a bishop on February 22, 2003. In Harrisburg, he succeeds the late Bishop Joseph P. McFadden, who died May 2, 2013.
The Diocese of Harrisburg includes 7,660 square miles in Pennsylvania and has a population of 2,236,085 of whom 234,822, or 11 percent, are Catholic.
Myron Joseph Cotta was born March 21, 1953, in Dos Palos, California. He attended St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, 1980-1987, receiving a bachelor’s degree and master of divinity degree. He was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Fresno on September 12, 1987. He was named a chaplain to his holiness (monsignor) in 2002 and a prelate of honor in 2009. He speaks English, Spanish and Portuguese.
The Diocese of Sacramento includes 42,597 square miles in California and has a population of 3,526,143 of whom 980,171, or 28 percent, are Catholic.