EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Pope Francis announced the appointment of a new auxiliary bishop for the Diocese of El Paso, the Very Rev. Anthony C Celino, JCL.
Bishop-elect Celino is the current Pastor of St. Raphael Parish in East El Paso and current Judicial Vicar for the Diocese of El Paso. Bishop-elect Celino was born in the Philippines on April 29, 1972, to the late Mines (Cerdan) and Teodolo Celino. He is the youngest of seven children.
Pope Francis announced the appointment on February 8, 2023. The appointment of an Auxiliary Bishop is the first since the establishment of the Diocese of El Paso in 1914. The episcopal ordination for Bishop-elect Celino has been scheduled for March 31st at St. Patrick Cathedral.
Bishop-elect Celino will be the 3rd person of Filipino descent elected as a Bishop in the United States.
“We thank the Holy Father for his attention and care for the Diocese of El Paso,” Bishop Mark Seitz said. “Bishop-elect Celino’s qualities are known in the diocese. He has previously served as my vicar general and made substantive contributions to the local church’s life. He brings a unique experience as a Filipino immigrant serving our border community as a priest for the past twenty-five years, a steadfast dedication to pastoral ministry, and fidelity to the Gospel.”
In the interim, Bishop-elect Celino will remain in his current position as Pastor of St. Raphael Parish on the east side of El Paso and Judicial Vicar of the Diocese of El Paso until later in the Spring 2023.
After his ordination to the priesthood in 1997, Bishop-elect Celino was assigned as Parochial Vicar at St. Patrick Cathedral in El Paso and then at Our Lady of Peace in Alpine, Texas. He also served as the Pastor of the former Santa Lucia Parish, now St. John Paul II Parish.
Bishop-elect Celino has served the Diocese of El Paso as a Vicar General, Moderator of the Curia, and Chancellor and taught at the Tepeyac Institute.
From December 2011 to July 2013, during the vacant seat time in the Diocese of El Paso, he served as the delegate of the Apostolic Administrator, Emeritus Bishop Armando X. Ochoa, D.D, then Bishop of Fresno, California.