Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of January 14, 2001
Former editor named bishop for Kamloops
By RENATO GANDIA
WCR Staff Writer
Cache Creek, B.C.
A former editor of the B.C. Catholic newspaper has been appointed the fifth bishop of Kamloops.
Pope John Paul named Msgr. David Monroe Jan. 3 to succeed Bishop Lawrence Sabatini, who resigned as bishop of Kamloops in September 1999.
"With God's grace I really want to do what he wants me to do," Monroe, now vicar general of Vancouver Archdiocese, told the WCR.
"There is always apprehension because you don't know all that it's going to entail, but at the same time as a priest this is how God lets his grace be known."
Monroe, 60, was born in Vancouver and was ordained to the priesthood in 1967 for the archdiocese.
He has served in several parishes since his ordination including St. John the Apostle Parish in Vancouver and has held the office of vicar general, acting chancellor, chair of the Archdiocesan Building and Liturgical Commissions and editor of the B.C. Catholic in the 1970s.
Monroe says the challenge of his episcopacy is to do the best he can for the life of the Church in Kamloops.
Monroe hopes "everybody in the Kamloops Diocese will work together for the life of the Church and to make this Church a living reality of Christ."
The bishop-elect spoke of his positive first experience of the life in the Kamloops Diocese when he met the clergy, who gather every first Monday of the month at Immaculate Heart of Mary Shrine in Cache Creek, B.C.
"To me this has been a wonderful experience because we began with (the Liturgy of the Hours) together, shared a meal together and we have an opportunity to visit with each other."
"I find this as a wonderful thing for building the beginning part of working with the diocese . . . to be with the priests."
Monroe studied at Christ the King Seminary in Mission, B.C., where he pursued philosophical and theological formation.
During the 28 months that there was no bishop for the diocese, Father Jerry Desmond acted as the diocesan administrator.
Kamloops has a small Catholic population scattered over a large area. Desmond told the WCR this poses a major challenge for ministry including the fact that the diocese has an aging clergy.
"We're going to have fewer priests in the future and how we serve the people in those small communities is something that we need to work on," Desmond said.
The diocese has a Catholic population of 47,010 in 79 parishes and missions served by 14 diocesan priests, 12 religious order priests, one permanent deacon and 21 religious sisters and brothers.