Houma, Louis., Sep 23, 2013 / 10:10 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis appointed Bishop Shelton J. Fabre head of the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux today, and accepted the resignation of Bishop Sam G. Jacobs, who had turned 75 in March.
Bishop Fabre had served as the auxiliary bishop of New Orleans since 2007.
“Bishop Fabre for me has been a true brother in ministry. He has been a great coworker in the ministry of this archdiocese, and I have a great deal of respect for him and for the way in which he lives out his ministry as a bishop,” Archbishop Gregory M. Aymond of New Orleans said Sept. 23.
“I will sincerely miss him and our ministry together. At the same time, the people of the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux are very blessed to receive a loving and gentle shepherd who will walk with them and lead them in the ways of Christ.”
Bishop Fabre will be installed as head of Houma-Thibodaux on Oct. 30.
He was born in 1963 in New Road, Louis., and after high school entered seminary for the Diocese of Baton Rouge. He studied at Saint Joseph Seminary College in Louis., and then received a masters in religious studies from the Catholic University of Louvain.
He was ordained a priest in 1989, and served at several parishes, as well as head of the diocesan Black Catholic office and in the tribunal. He was then appointed auxiliary bishop of New Orleans, and consecrated on Feb. 28, 2007.
Bishop Jacobs, who is Bishop Fabre's predecessor, had served as head of the Houma-Thibodaux diocese since 2003.
The Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux covers 3,400 square miles in south-east Louisiana, and is home to some 120,000 Catholics, who comprise 59 percent of the local population.