Malolos vicar general named new bishop of Iba, Zambales.
By Leslie Ann Aquino
Pope Francis has appointed Monsignor Bartolome Gaspar Santos as the new bishop of Iba, Zambales.
His appointment was announced by the Vatican on Saturday.
The 50-year old Santos will succeed Archbishop Florentino Lavarias who in 2014 was transferred to the Archdiocese of San Fernando in Pampanga.
The Diocese of Malolos welcomed the appointment of Santos who was serving as its Vicar General.
In a statement, the diocese thanked God for the blessing of the appointment of Santos.
"Bishop-elect Santos' appointment comes at 33 years since the appointment and ordination of Most Rev. Deogracias Soriano Iniguez, Jr., D.D. who was part of the Malolos clergy upon his appointment first as Auxiliary Bishop of Malolos and was also assigned in the Diocese of Iba before Kalookan, his See upon retirement," read the statement.
Born in Santa Maria, Bulacan, in the diocese of Malolos, on December 1, 1967.,Santos took his high school studies at the Immaculate Conception Minor Seminary of Malolos and completed courses in philosophy and theology at the University of Santo Tomas Ecclesiastical Faculties of Manila.He obtained a licentiate in biblical theology in 1999 from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.
He was ordained priest for the diocese of Malolos on August 27, 1992.
Subsequently he served as vicar in the San Pascual Baylon parish of Obando, Bulacan (1992-1994) and in the San Isidro Labrador parish, Pulilan, Bulacan (1994-1995), and spiritual director and professor at the Immaculate Conception Minor Seminary of Malolos (1995-1996).
Returning home after his studies in Rome, he first continued his service in the same roles at the Immaculate Conception Minor Seminary of Malolos (1999-2005), and then became rector (2005-2009). From 2005 to 2013 he served as episcopal vicar for the religious.
In 2009, he was appointed rector and moderator of the pastoral team of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Valenzuela City, in 2010 he became a parish priest.
From 2013, he was serving as Vicar General of the diocese of Malolos.
The Bishop-elect will be the fifth Bishop of the Diocese of Iba.
Monsignor Bartolome Gaspar Santos (Photo via Facebook/Manila Bulletin)