Virajpete priest Fr Rosario Menezes appointed bishop of Papua New Guinea

C V Joseph

Bengaluru, Oct 11: Pope Francis has appointed Fr Rosario Menezes SMM, the third Bishop of Lae, Papua New Guinea (PNG) on Wednesday, October 10.

Fr Rosario is an Indian Montfort missionary who had been serving the Church in PNG since May 2000.

He was born at Virajpete in Kodagu district of the diocese of Mysuru on August 30, 1969 and was ordained a priest on November 4, 1999.

Several bishops, priests, religious and laity besides diocese of Mysuru congratulated him on the occasion.

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Msgr Christian Blouin CMM from the pastoral care of the diocese of Lae, PNG. Fr Rosario is currently general counselor of the Company of Maria of Montfort. He joined the minor seminary of the Congregation of the Company of Mary (Montfort Missionaries) and completed his Pre-University studies at Saint Philomena’s College in Mysuru. He obtained bachelor’s degree from the University of Mysore. He completed Philosophical and Theological studies at Dharmaram College, Bengaluru.

After his priestly ordination, he has held a number of offices. They include Assistant to the Master of Novices and Bursar of his Congregation in India (1999-2000); Missionary in the diocese of Daru-Kiunga, in Papua New Guinea (2000-2008); Superior Delegate of the Montfort Missionaries (2005-2008); Head of the diocesan Projects Office (2007-2008); Studies in Psychology and Counseling at the international Institute of Integral Human Sciences in Montreal, Canada (2008-2011); Once again a missionary in Papua New Guinea and Parish Priest of St. Martin of Pores (Archdiocese of Port Moresby); Superior Delegate and Head of Vocations and Formation of the Montfort Missionaries; Head of projects for the Conference of Catholic Bishops of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands (2012-2014) President of the Federation of Men Religious in PNG and the Solomon Islands (2015-2017); and member of the College of Consultors and of the Senate of Priests of the Archdiocese of Port Moresby. Since 2017 he has served as General Counselor of the Company of Mary of Montfort, Rome.

Fr Menezes’ long experience in varying capacities and areas would go a long way for his future apostolate as a bishop, observed one of his close associates in Bengaluru.