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New Chicago auxiliaries born in Mexico, Poland

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WASHINGTON -- Two Chicago pastors -- one born in Mexico, the other in Poland -- have been named auxiliary bishops in the Archdiocese of Chicago by Pope Benedict XVI.

The appointments of Father Alberto Rojas, pastor of Good Shepherd Parish, and Father Andrew Wypych, pastor of St. Francis Borgia Parish, were announced in Washington June 13 by Msgr. Jean-Francois Lantheaume, charge d'affaires at the apostolic nunciature.

Bishop-designate Rojas, a 46-year-old native of Mexico, will become the 27th active Hispanic bishop in the United States.

Bishop-designate Wypych, born 56 years ago in Kazimierza Wielka, Poland, was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Krakow in 1979 and came to the United States in 1983. Chicago is believed to have the second-largest Polish population in the world, after Warsaw.

"Both will bring their dedication to the church and her people to the office of bishop," said a June 13 statement from Cardinal Francis E. George of Chicago. "They will make visible in their ministry the love of God for his church."

He added that Pope Benedict's "pastoral concern for the priests, deacons, religious men and women and lay ministers and all the faithful of the Archdiocese of Chicago is clearly evident in these appointments."

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He said each of the new auxiliary bishops will head a vicariate of the archdiocese. In addition, Bishop-designate Rojas will be the archdiocesan liaison to Hispanic Catholics and Bishop-designate Wypych will be archdiocesan liaison to Polish Catholics.

Bishop-designate Rojas was born Jan. 5, 1965, in Aguascalientes, Mexico. He studied for the priesthood at St. Maria de Guadalupe Seminary in Aguascalientes and at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in the Archdiocese of Chicago. He was ordained in 1997 for the Archdiocese of Chicago.

He served 1997-99 as associate pastor of St. Gregory the Great Parish and 1999-2002 as associate pastor of St. Ita Parish, both in Chicago, before becoming pastor of Chicago's Good Shepherd Parish, a post he held until his episcopal appointment.

Bishop-designate Rojas also served from 2002 to 2009 on the seminarian formation faculty of Mundelein Seminary.

Bishop-designate Wypych, born Dec. 5, 1954, pursued seminary studies in Krakow. After his 1979 ordination, he served as associate pastor for two Krakow parishes before seeking incardination in 1983 to the Archdiocese of Chicago. Incardination was granted in 1989.

After his arrival in the United States, he served at St. Giles Parish in the Chicago suburb of Oak Park and at several Chicago parishes, including associate pastor at St. Ladislaus and St. Eugene parishes; parochial administrator and pastor at Five Holy Martyrs Parish; associate pastor, parochial administrator and two stints as pastor at St. Pancratius Parish; and, since 2002, pastor of St. Francis Borgia Parish.

Bishop-designate Wypych, who has served as a dean in the archdiocese, speaks Polish, English and French.

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