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Rome Reports

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Pope selects Latino bishop Jose Gomez to head Los Angeles archdiocese

After Cardinal Roger Mahony retires, Archbishop Gomez will head the largest Catholic Archdiocese in the United States, with more than five million members, 70 percent of them Hispanic.Gomez was born in Monterrey, Mexico, and studied theology at the University of Navarre in Spain. In 1978, he was ordained an Opus Dei priest in Spain and later worked in the Galveston-Houston area.From 2001 he served as auxiliary bishop in Denver. And in 2004 was named archbishop of San Antonio where he currently serves. 58-year-old Gomez was recently elected chair of the Committee on Migrants and Refugee Services for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

As coadjutor bishop for Los Angeles, he will take over the archdiocese when the current archbishop, Cardinal Roger Mahony retires probably in 2011.Archbishop Gomez is one of 22 Opus Dei bishops around the world. Like any other priest, once a member of the Opus Dei Prelature becomes a bishop, he answers directly to the pope and no longer to the prelate.

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