Sunday 7 April 2024

Pope Francis Transfers Catholic Bishop from Algerian Diocese to Tunisian Archdiocese

Pope Francis has transferred the Bishop who has been serving as Local Ordinary of Constantine-Hippone Diocese in Algeria to shepherd Tunis Archdiocese in the North African nation of Tunisia.

The Papal transfer of Bishop Nicolas Lhernould who has been at the helm of the Algerian Diocese since his Episcopal Ordination in February 2020 was made public on Thursday, April 4, and published by the Holy See Press Office.

On the same day of the appointment of Bishop Lhernould, the Holy Father also accepted the resignation of Archbishop Ilario Antoniazzi who had been at the helm of the Metropolitan See since his installation in April 2013.

Born in March 1975 in the Diocese of Nanterre in France, the Archbishop-elect was ordained a Priest in May 2004 after studies at the Pontifical French Seminary in Rome and obtained a Baccalaureate in Theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University.

The holder of a Licentiate in Patristic Studies from the Rome-based Pontifical Patristic Institute Augustinianum served in various capacities as a Priest including, Parish Priest of Saint Félix, Sousse, Monastir, and Mahdia.

He also served as the President of the Association of the Study Center of Carthage; Parish Priest of Sainte Jeanne d'Arc in Tunis; Vicar General of the Archdiocese and National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies for Tunisia (2019).

Once consecrated, the Vice-President of the Episcopal Conference of the North Africa Region (CERNA) will become the 13th Local Ordinary of the Tunisian Archdiocese which measures 163,610 square kilometers.

The Metropolitan See that was erected in 1843 as the Vicariate Apostolic of Tunis before being elevated to an Archdiocese in May 2010 has a population of 30,210 Catholics representing 0.3 percent of the country’s total population, according to 2022 statistics.