May 15, 2007 -
The Holy Father, Benedict XVI has recently announced the appointment of the Most Reverend Robert Harris, as Bishop of Saint John, New Brunswick. Since his episcopal ordination on December 12, 2002 until today, Bishop Harris has served as the Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Sault Ste. Marie.
Bishop Plouffe has declared "Bishop Harris will be missed by many in this diocese and personally, I am losing a very loyal and dedicated immediate collaborator. Even though his episcopal ministry among us was brief, we will always remember him for his kind and sensitive approach to people and challenges. We wish him well as he undertakes his new responsibilities and assure him of our prayers and most sincere gratitude."
Bishop Harris becomes the twelfth Bishop of the Diocese of Saint John. Founded September 30, 1842 it is the seventh oldest Roman Catholic Diocese in Canada. Belonging to the Metropolitan See of Moncton, the Diocese serves a population of 115,400 Roman Catholic dispersed over a territory of 60,000 square kilometres, including seven counties and three principal regions: Saint John, Fredericton and Miramichi.
The fifty-eight parishes and thirty-two missions are served by 67 diocesan priests, 13 religious priests, 2 deacons, 1 religious brother and 139 religious women.
During his time in the Diocese of Sault Ste. Marie, Bishop Harris served as Vicar General, Co-ordinator of Pastoral Services (both English and French sectors), Associate Judicial Vicar of the Matrimonial Tribunal, Chancellor and Director of Vocations. At the level of the Ontario Conference of Catholic Bishops (OCCB) as well as the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishop (CCCB), Bishop Harris has served on several Episcopal Commissions, Councils and Committees.
The date of his installation will be announced in the near future.
Bishop Harris' letter to the faithful of our diocese can be read here.