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New auxiliary ordained for Washington

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WASHINGTON — The new auxiliary bishop of the Washington Archdiocese pledged to love and serve God and God’s people during his ordination Mass.


“I’d like to thank God for allowing me to answer his call and serve him and his church as a deacon, priest and now a bishop,” Auxiliary Bishop Roy Edward Campbell Jr. told the congregation attending the ceremony April 21 at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in downtown Washington.


Bishop Campbell also expressed gratitude to his family and Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl. He prayed for Mary’s intercession, that God will guide him and the people of the archdiocese to do God’s will, help the church grow, and be fruitful in their service.


Cardinal Wuerl, who presided at the ordination, said the new bishop “received the faith and was formed in that faith right here (in the archdiocese) and who already brings a sense of continuity with the pastoral life of this church.”


Co-consecrating bishops were Memphis Bishop Martin D. Holley, who served as an auxiliary bishop of Washington from 2004 until 2016, and Washington Auxiliary Bishop Barry C. Knestout.


Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States, read the letter from Pope Francis appointing Bishop Campbell.


Twelve other bishops participated in the Mass including Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington, Auxiliary Bishop Mario E. Dorsonville and retired Auxiliary Bishop Francisco Gonzalez, both of Washington.


Sitting in the front sections of the cathedral were many of the new bishop’s family members, along with members of St. Joseph Parish in Largo, Md., where Bishop Campbell will continue to serve as pastor. He has been at the parish since 2010.


In a liturgy rich with symbolism, Cardinal Wuerl and the other bishops laid hands on Bishop Campbell’s head, the key sacramental gesture that ordained him as a bishop. The imposition of hands invoking the Holy Spirit is used in every sacrament.


Moments earlier, the bishop-elect prostrated himself on the floor as the Litany of Saints was chanted, which included the names of recent saints John XXIII, John Paul II, Junípero Serra and Teresa of Calcutta.


Reflecting the joy of that day, the cardinal said, “I join my voice to that of your family, friends, the presbyterium, and all the faithful of this local Church in praise to God for this wonderful moment that promises so much good for the Church.”


The same sentiment was expressed by family members after the Mass. The new bishop’s mother, Elizabeth Campbell, who is Baptist, said, “I’m as proud of him as I can be.”


His aunt, Louise Washington, said, “I’ve been on cloud nine ever since I heard” that he was becoming a bishop.


Bishop Campbell, a native of Charles County, Md., moved with his family to Washington when he was young. After retiring from a successful career in banking, he was ordained as a priest of the archdiocese in 2007.


© Arlington Catholic Herald 2017