Vatican City (Fides Service) - The Holy Father, Pope John Paul II has appointed (27 February 2004), Bishop of Dili (East Timor) Reverend Alberto Ricardo da Silva, Rector of the major seminary in Dili;
The Holy Father has appointed Bishop of Baucau, Bishop Basilio do Nascimento, until now titular Bishop of Settimunicia and apostolic Administrator “sede vacante et ad nutum Sanctae Sedis” of the same see.
Reverend Alberto Ricardo da Silva, was born in Aileu, Diocese of Dili, on 24 April 1943. He went to the minor seminary in Dili, and studied philosophy in Macao and theology in Portugal (Leira major seminary). He studied in Rome at the Pontifical Gregorian University obtaining a licentiate in spiritual theology. He was ordained a priest in Portugal on 15 August 1972 for the diocese of Dili. He has since been: assistant priest at Ossu (1972-73); spiritual director of the propaedeutic seminary at Dare (1973-74); parish priest in two different parishes (1974-80); Vicar general of Dili (1980-92); Studies in Rome (1992-94); Rector of the propaedeutic seminary at Dare (1995-2000); since 2000 rector of Dili major seminary.
The diocese of Dili, created in 1940, is immediately subject to the Holy See. It has an area of 7,767 sq. km, a population of 558.610, of whom 514.089 are Catholics, gathered in 28 parishes looked after by 78 priests (32 diocesan, 46 religious), 203 Sisters, 45 major seminarians. (S.L.) (Agenzia Fides 6/4/2004; Righe 18; Parole 221)