Holy See appoints two Thomasians as auxiliary bishops
Pope Francis appointed two Thomasian alumni from the Faculty of Sacred Theology as auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Cebu on Friday, June 3.
Msgr. Dennis Villarojo (pictured left) and Fr. Oscar J.L. Florencio (pictured right) were appointed as auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Cebu. Photo from the official blog of the University of Santo Tomas
POPE Francis appointed two Thomasian alumni from the Faculty of Sacred Theology as auxiliary bishops of the Archdiocese of Cebu on Friday, June 3.
Fr. Oscar J.L. Florencio, Vice-Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Palo and Msgr. Dennis C. Villarojo, currently assigned to the Parish of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in Capitol, Cebu City, were elected as auxiliary bishops.
According to the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, the appointments will increase the number of Cebu’s auxiliary bishops to three although Bishop Emilio Bataclan is set to a mandatory retirement with the age of 75 in September 2015.
Bishop-elects Florencio and Villarojo were ordained priests on April 3, 1990 and June 10, 1994, respectively.
Florencio finished his Theology degree at the University of Santo Tomas and his Philosophy degree at the Sacred Heart Seminary in Palo, Leyte.
He obtained his licentiate and doctorate in Sacred Theology at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome, where he studied from 1994 to 1999.
At 49, he already became a parochial vicar and spiritual director of the Sacred Heart Seminary and a professor at Saint John the Evangelist School of Theology (SJEST), the Archdiocesan Seminary of Palo.
Florencio became a parish priest in Saint Francis of Assisi Parish (2004-2006) and Sacred Heart Parish (2006-2009). In 2009, he reverted to SJEST seminary and became a rector in 2013.
Villarojo finished his Philosophy studies at the San Carlos Seminary College of Cebu City and obtained his licentiate in Philosophy at UST, where he also completed his Theology studies.
From 1994-1998, he served as the personal secretary of Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, the Archbishop-Emeritus of Cebu.
The 48-year-old bishop-elect studied in Rome from 1998-2000 at the Pontifical University of Holy Cross and obtained a doctorate in Philosophy in the same institution.
After finishing his studies, he returned to Cebu and continued being Vidal’s secretary until he was assigned to be a parish priest in 2010.
Presently, Villarojo is the Secretary General of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress to be held in Cebu in January 2016.