Mexican archbishop elected new president of CELAM

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay -- The Latin American bishops' council elected Mexican Archbishop Carlos Aguiar Retes of Tlalnepantla as its head until 2015.

Archbishop Aguiar, who was ordained a priest in 1973 and holds a doctorate in biblical theology, has been serving as head of the Mexican bishops' conference.

At their 33rd ordinary assembly, the presidents of the region's 22 bishops' conferences chose Archbishop Ruben Salazar Gomez of Bogota, Colombia, as first vice president of CELAM, as the council is known; Archbishop Dimas Lara Barbosa of Campo Grande, Brazil, as second vice president; and Auxiliary Bishop Santiago Silva Retamales of Valparaiso, Chile, as secretary-general.

Bishop Carlos Collazzi Irazabal of Mercedes, Uruguay, president of the Uruguayan bishops' conference, will head the CELAM economic committee.

The delegates also chose Archbishop Ubaldo Santana Sequera of Maracaibo, Venezuela, to head CELAM's ecclesial communion and dialogue department; Archbishop Victor Sanchez Espinosa of Puebla, Mexico, as head of the mission and spirituality department; Archbishop Ricardo Tobon Restrepo of Medellin, Colombia, to lead the ministries and vocations department; and Auxiliary Bishop Raul Martin of Buenos Aires, Argentina, as president of the family and life department.

Auxiliary Bishop Pablo Varela Server of Panama City was elected to head the culture and education department; Arcbishop Pedro Barreto Jimeno of Huancayo, Peru, as president the justice and solidarity department; and Bishop Adalberto Martinez Flores of San Pedro, Paraguay, to lead the communications department.

Join the Conversation

Send your thoughts and reactions to Letters to the Editor. Learn more here