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Holy See Announces Appointments in Brazil, Ecclesial Restructuring

Restructuring of the ecclesiastical province of Belém do Pará, Brazil

The Holy Father has restructured the ecclesiastical province of Belém do Pará, Brazil, suppressing the territorial prelature of Xingu and, from its entire territory to which a municipality of the diocese of Marabá has been added, has erected two new ecclesiastical circumscriptions: the diocese of Xingu-Altamira and the territorial prelature of Alto Xingu-Tucumã.

At the same time the Pope created the ecclesiastical province of Santarém, Brazil, elevating to a metropolitan Church the episcopal see of Santarém and assigning to it as suffragans the diocese of Óbidos, the territorial prelature of Itaituba, and the new circumscriptions of Xingu-Altamira and of Alto Xingu-Tucumã.

The ecclesiastical province of Belém do Pará, Brazil, conserves as suffragans: the dioceses of Macapá, Castanhal, Bragança do Pará, Ponta de Pedras, Marabá, Abaetetuba, Cametá and the territorial prelature of Marajó.

Statistical data of the diocese of Xingu-Altamira:

Area 247,501 km2
Population 361,981 inhabitants
Catholics 250,000
Parishes 10
Diocesan priests 15
Religious priests 9
Seminarians 11
Professed religious 7
Women religious 37

The new diocese consists of the following ten civil municipalities: Altamira-PA, Vitória do Xingu-PA, Senador José Porfírio-PA, Porto de Moz-PA, Gurupá-PA, Anapu-PA, Brasil Novo-PA, Medicilândia-PA, Uruará-PA and Placas-PA.

Dati statistici della prelatura territoriale di Alto Xingu-Tucumã

Area 128,291 km2
Population 238.424 inhabitants
Catholics 130,000
Parishes 5
Diocesan priests 1
Religious priests 9
Women religious 5

The new territorial prelature consists of the following six municipalities: Tucumã-PA, São Félix do Xingu-PA, Ourilândia do Norte-PA, Bannach-PA, Cumaru do Norte-PA and Água Azul do Norte-PA.

Statistical data of the diocese of Marabá after dismemberment:

Area 81,832 km2
Population 814,000 inhabitants
Catholics 450,000
Parishes 28
Diocesan priests 31
Religious priests 16
Seminarians 23
Professed religious 32
Women religious 37

The territory of the diocese of Marabá is formed of the following fifteen civil municipalities: Marabá-PA, Abel Figueiredo-PA, Bom Jesus do Tocantins-PA, Brejo Grande do Araguaia-PA, Canaã dos Carajás-PA, Curionópolis-PA, Eldorado dos Carajás-PA, Goianésia do Pará-PA, Itupiranga-PA, Jacundá-PA, Nova Ipixuna-PA, Palestina do Pará-PA, Parauapebas-PA, São Domingos do Araguaia-PA and São João do Araguaia-PA.

Appointment of metropolitan archbishop of Santarém, Brazil

The Holy Father has appointed as first metropolitan archbishop of the new archdiocese of Santarém, Brazil, Bishop Irineu Roman, C.S.I., transferring him from the titular see of Sertei and the office of auxiliary bishop of Belém do Pará.

Archbishop-elect Irineu Roman, C.S.I., was born on 10 August 1958 in Vista Alegre do Prata, diocese of Caxias do Sul, in the State of Rio Grande do Sul. He carried out his studies in philosophy in the Imaculada Conceição Faculty of Viamão-RS and in the University of Caxias do Sul-RS, and in theology at the Instituto Teológico do Norte do Paraná in Londrina-PR and at the Pontifical Catholic University of Porto Alegre-RS.

He gave his religious vows on 2 January 1988 in the Congregation of Saint Joseph (Josephines of Murialdo), and received episcopal ordination on 1 January 1990.

During his priestly ministry he has held the following roles: professor, bursar and formator in the Josephine Seminary in Fazenda Souza-RS; professor and formator in the Murialdo College in Ana Rech-RS; parish vicar in Fazenda Souza-RS, Ana Rech-RS and Planaltina-DF; parish priest of Santa Edwiges in Belém-PA in the diocese of Belém do Pará, where he was also member of the presbyteral council and episcopal vicar.

On 8 January 2014 he was appointed as titular bishop of Sertei and auxiliary of Belém do Pará, receiving episcopal consecrated the following 19 March.

Within the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil, he is responsible for Pastoral Care of Religious Tourism and secretary of the Norte 2 Region, which includes the ecclesiastical circumscriptions of the State of Pará.

Appointment of first bishop-prelate of the new territorial prelature of Alto Xingu-Tucumã, Brazil

The Holy Father has appointed the Reverend Father Jesús María López Mauléon, O.A.R., currently parish priest in the archdiocese of Fortaleza, as the first bishop-prelate of the new territorial prelature of Alto Xingu-Tucumã, Brazil.

The Reverend Father Jesús María López Mauléon, O.A.R., was born on 5 March 1955 in Mues, province of Navarre, in the archdiocese of Pamplona y Tudela, Spain. He attended the philosophy course at the San Nicolás de Tolentino seminary in Fuenterrabia, Guipúzcoa, Spain (1973-1975) and the theology course at the major seminary in Marcilla, Navarre (1976-1981). He then obtained a Baccalaureate in pastoral theology (1986-1987) and a licentiate in biblical theology (2002) from the Catholic University of Comillas in Madrid.

He gave his religious vows in the Order of Augustinian Recollects on 18 October 1980, and was ordained a priest on 18 July 1981.

During his priestly ministry he has held the following positions: parish vicar of San Sebastián, Chiclana de la Frontiera, Cadiz, Spain (1982-1986); parish vicar of Santa Rita in Madrid (1987-1991); parish priest in Sástago, Zaragoza (1991-1994); parish priest of Santa Maria del Águila in Almería (1994-1997); professor of the Institute of the Baccalaureate in Lodosa, Navarre (1997-1999).

In August 1999 he transferred to Brazil, where he held the following positions: in the diocese of Tianguá-CE he was parish vicar of Nossa Senhora dos Prazeres in Guaraciaba do Norte-CE and professor of theology (1999-2001); in the diocese of Cachoeiro do Itapemirim-ES he was parish vicar of Nossa Senhora da Consolação in the diocesan see; in the diocese of Franca-SP he was parish priest of Nossa Senhora Aparecida in the city see and professor of philosophy in the Augustinian Institute (2003-2011); parish Vicar in the Augustinian Mission in the prelature of Lábrea-AM and professor of theology in Rio Branco-AC (2001); and in the archdiocese of Fortaleza-CE he was parish vicar and coordinator of the team of priests for the pastoral area of Barra do Ceará in the metropolitan see (2011-2012).

He currently exercises his ministry in Fortaleza-CE as parish priest of São Pedro and episcopal vicar of the Region of Nossa Senhora da Assunção.

Appointment of the first bishop of the new diocese of Xingu-Altamira, Brazil

The Holy Father has appointed Msgr. João Muniz Alves, O.F.M., currently bishop-prelate of Xingu, as first bishop of the new diocese of Xingu-Altamira, Brazil.

Bishop-elect João Muniz Alves, O.F.M., was born on 8 January 1961 in Carema, in the municipality of Santa Rita, archdiocese of São Luís do Maranhão, in the State of Maranhão. He completed his studies in philosophy and theology at the Sagrado Coração de Jesus major seminary in Teresina-PI. He then obtained a licentiate in philosophy from the Pontifical University Antonianum in Rome. In addition, he was awarded a licentiate and a doctorate in moral theology from the Pontifical Alphonsian Academy in Rome.

He made his solemn profession in the Order of Franciscan Friars Minor on 14 January 1991, and was ordained a priest on 4 September 1993.

Within his Order, he held the following positions: vice-master and then master of postulants in Bacabal-MA; definitor of the Franciscan vice-province of Nossa Senhora da Assunção with headquarters in Bacabal-MA; minister provincial of the Franciscan Province of Nossa Senhora da Assunção with headquarters in Bacabal-MA; and guardian of the Franciscan Community in São Luís do Maranhão-MA. In the diocese of Bacabal, he was parish vicar of São José in Lago da Pedra-MA; parish vicar and then parish priest of São Francisco das Chagas in Bacabal-MA; member of the presbyteral council. He was also visitator general of the Franciscan Province of Mozambique, and professor of moral theology.

On 23 December 2015, he was appointed as bishop-prelate of Xingu, and received episcopal ordination on 5 March 2016.

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