GENERAL ROCA, Argentina, APRIL 30, 2010 (Zenit.org).- Bishop Marcelo Cuenca assumed his position in the Diocese of Alto Valle del Rio Negro, Argentina, on the Feast of Divine Mercy, April 11.
He was appointed to that position by Benedict XVI on Feb. 10, and ordained a bishop on the Feast of the Annunciation, March 25.
The 55-year-old prelate told ZENIT it was a “particular gift” to receive the episcopal ordination during the Year for Priests, which ends June 19.
Born in Cordoba, Argentina, Marcelo Cuenca became a civil engineer before entering the seminary in 1977. He was ordained a priest in 1983.
He told some of his vocational story to ZENIT: “I lived in a Christian family, of firm convictions and habitual practice of the faith.
“As a child and adolescent I participated in parish groups of Catholic Action. As a young university student I lived a rich commitment and formation in the faith.”
Thus maturing in my Christian life, he said, “I was presented with the possibility of living more exclusively for the Lord.”
Bishop Cuenca recalled that he was guided by a spiritual director at this point, and worked to finish his university degree before entering the seminary.
He noted that his preparation as a civil engineer actually helped him in many ways, because it taught him a “way of thinking, of reasoning, requiring principles,” which helped in the understanding of “how to act and guide the life and formation of a community.”
The prelate affirmed that God formed him in many ways to be a “successor of the Apostles for this part of the People of God in communion with the Holy Father, knowing that difficult times teach us to trust more absolutely in him who saves us.”
Looking ahead to his ministry, Bishop Cuenca said, “I believe that the great challenge that the Lord poses to us is to lead, guide and support persons in the encounter with and dedication to the Lord Jesus, attaining life with the Father, through the light of the Holy Spirit.”
“With the light of the Lord,” he said, I will try to help “guide everyone to sanctity.”[With the contribution of Carmen Elena Villa]