MANILA, June 15, 2015— The country’s new Catholic bishop has asked for prayers as he prepares to take on his new role.
Bishop-elect Victor Ocampo said he was “afraid” of the size of the task of overseeing a diocese but he sees the appointment as grace and honor.
“Like what Pope Francis said after his election, pray for me,” said Ocampo, who will be ordained bishop at the Balanga cathedral on August 29.
“I feel unworthy (of the position). I’m afraid of what lies ahead because I’ve been just a parish priest for the last 35 years,” he said.
But Ocampo said he places his trust in God who chose him as the new bishop of the Diocese of Gumaca in Quezon.
“St. Paul said that to be a bishop is good but not everybody is capable of becoming one. So this is a grace given to me so I have to accept it,” he said.
The 63-year old bishop-elect said he was informed by Papal nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto about his new appointment on June 2.
The nuncio, he said, asked him to “reflect on it in prayer” and write his “letter of acceptance” to Pope Francis which he sent on June 8.
The Vatican on June 12 announced Ocampo’s appointment as the new bishop of Gumaca.
Gumaca is one of the country’s growing dioceses with almost a million Catholic population and about 130 priests and religious.
“Gumaca is very religious. There’s high percentage of Catholics and they have more priests compared in Bataan,” he added.
Ocampo is currently the chancellor of the Diocese of Balanga and parish priest of the Santo Domingo Church in Abucay town, Bataan. (Roy Lagarde/CBCPNews)