Bishop Pfeifer Statement:
"This joyful phrase we use to proclaim as of March 13, 2013, we have a new Pope for the Catholic Church - Pope Francis, SJ, who is replacing Pope Benedict XVI, who retired several weeks ago because of age and related issues. It is with great joy that I, as Bishop of the Diocese of San Angelo, received this news, and I know this is also a special joy among all the people of the Diocese and throughout the Catholic world as for many other people on planet earth.
"As Pope Francis begins his new shepherding of the universal Church, I, along with the people of the Diocese of San Angelo pledge our loyalty to him and assure him of our prayers. We thank him for accepting. Pope Francis stands as the figure of unity for all Catholics wherever they reside. This is a new beginning for our Catholic Church and a time for all of us to recommit ourselves to living our Catholic faith with new joy, confidence, new meaning and in a new spirit of service to others, striving always to promote justice and peace in our world and especially reaching out to the poor and needy."
Attached is information I have sent to the Priests of the Diocese of San Angelo on the election of the new Holy Father, Pope Francis, and the special Mass that will be celebrated by me for him at Sacred Heart Cathedral in San Angelo on Monday, March 18 at 12:00 noon.