FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
19 September 2011 – 6:30 A.M. EDT
ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y. – September 19, 2011 – Pope Benedict XVI today named the Most Reverend Peter Anthony Libasci, 59, to be the new Bishop of the Diocese of Manchester, New Hampshire. The appointment was announced in Washington, DC today by Rev. Msgr. Jean-Francis Lantheaume, Chargé d’Affaires at the Apostolic Nunciature to the United States. Bishop-designate Libasci will succeed Bishop John Brendan McCormack.
Bishop-designate Libasci will be installed as the tenth bishop of Manchester at Saint Joseph Cathedral on December 8, 2011 at 2:00 p.m. E.S.T.
Since his ordination as bishop on June 1, 2007, Bishop-designate Libasci has served as the Episcopal Vicar for the Eastern Vicariate of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. Bishop-designate Libasci is also bi-ritual and celebrates the Divine Liturgy in the Byzantine Ruthenian Catholic Church.
“While I will greatly miss his wise counsel and tireless apostolic spirit as Vicar of the Eastern Region of our Diocese, I rejoice that the Holy Father has chosen one of the priests of this Diocese to lead the Diocese of Manchester which I know well and whose current bishop is a long time friend with whom I shared Episcopal ordination on December 27, 1995,” said Bishop William Murphy, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre.
“As priest, as pastor and as bishop, Bishop Libasci brought a deep sense of the holy to all the many pastoral efforts that have marked his tenure in this Diocese which will always be his home.” Bishop Murphy stated: “His brother bishops here as well as his brother priests of this Diocese are one in sending him our prayers and our congratulations, asking God, through the intercession of our Lady, to watch over him, bless and guide him in his new pastoral role as Bishop of Manchester and assuring him of our fraternal support in the years to come.”
“I am grateful to Almighty God who has brought me into being, to my parents who gave me life and to my family, friends and my Holy Catholic Church – all of who have sustained me to this very hour,” said Bishop-designate Libasci. “These include Bishop William Murphy, my diocesan bishop in Rockville Centre, my brother priests and deacons and all the lay faithful I was privileged to serve as priest and bishop in that Diocese since my priestly ordination in 1978.”
Born November 9, 1951 in Queens, N.Y., Bishop Libasci attended Catholic schools throughout his childhood and attended seminary at Saint Meinrad Seminary, Indiana. He was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Rockville Centre on April 1, 1978.
On December 10, 2004, Father Libasci was named Honorary Prelate to His Holiness Pope John Paul II with the title of monsignor. On April 3, 2007, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed Rev. Msgr. Libasci auxiliary bishop of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. He was installed on June 1, 2007.
From 1999-2007, Bishop-designate Libasci served as pastor of Saint Therese of Lisieux parish, Montauk, New York. While in Montauk, he presided over the entire construction process of a new church, which was dedicated in 2007.
Bishop-designate Libasci served as administrator for six months and then pastor for ten years of Our Lady of Good Counsel parish, Inwood. Previously, he served for nearly six years as associate pastor of Ss. Cyril and Methodius parish, Deer Park. Bishop-designate Libasci’s first assignment as a priest was as an associate pastor of Saint Raymond’s parish, East Rockaway from 1978-1982.
A native of Middle Village, N.Y., Bishop-designate Libasci earned his bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Saint John’s University.
Note to Media:
A biographic summary, pictures, statement from Bishop-designate Libasci and Bishop Murphy will be posted on the Diocese of Rockville Centre website: www.drvc.org and on the Diocese of Manchester website: www.catholicnh.org.
About The Diocese of Rockville Centre
The Diocese of Rockville Centre (www.drvc.org) was formed in 1957 and covers 1,198 square miles in Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The diocese serves approximately 1,737,498 baptized Catholics (total population in both counties is approximately 3.4 million). There are 134 parishes (1 campus parish) in 115 towns. In 2010, 16,318 baptisms, 16,296 confirmations, 17,123 First Holy Communions and 4,773 marriages took place in the diocese. There are 19,261 students in Catholic elementary schools; 12,595 students in Catholic high schools and 3,500 in higher institutions. There are 55 Catholic elementary schools (51 parish or regional and 4 private), 10 high schools (3 diocesan, 2 parish and 5 private) and one Catholic college in the diocese. Catholic Health Services of Long Island consists of six hospitals, three nursing homes, a community-based home for those with special needs and a hospice. In 2010, Catholic Charities assisted more than 53,500 individuals who are poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged on Long Island. (09/11).
CONTACT: Sean P. Dolan
Director of Communications
(p) 516-678-5800, ext. 625