Monday, September 19, 2011

Our New Bishop of Manchester, NH

Please join me in praying that he will have the grace required to be the servant God desires and be a man who leads and teaches the FULLNESS OF TRUTH without regard for public opinion ... being more concerned with GOD'S OPINION rather than mans. Born 3 days after me and also from Queens, NY! I moved to NH in '78 when he was ordained in NY. And we both wind up in NH with him the head of my diocese :)

Peter Anthony Libasci was born November 9, 1951, to the late William and Florence Libasci in Queens, N.Y. He attended St. Margaret School, Middle Village, N.Y., followed by Cathedral Preparatory Seminary, Elmhurst, N.Y.
Throughout middle school, he helped clean the church on Friday afternoons. He says this is where he began learning about the Liturgy. He also sang for the parish choir. Throughout high school, he was active in the parish leadership program.

Libasci earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. John’s University, Jamaica, N.Y., and a Master of Divinity degree from St. Meinrad Seminary, St. Meinrad, Ind.
Father Libasci was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Rockville Centre on April 1, 1978 by Bishop John R. McGann. He was first assigned to St. Raymond parish, East Rockaway, N.Y., and then to SS Cyril and Methodius parish, Deer Park, N.Y. In 1988, he was assigned to Our Lady of Good Counsel parish, Inwood, N.Y., where he served for 11 years as administrator and then pastor.
Since 1999, Father Libasci has served as pastor of St. Therese of Lisieux parish in Montauk, N.Y. He presided over the construction process of the new church, which was dedicated by Bishop William Murphy on March 31, 2007.
On December 10, 2004, Father Libasci was named Honorary Prelate to His Holiness Pope John Paul II with the title of monsignor.
On April 3, 2007, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed Msgr. Libasci auxiliary bishop of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. He was installed on June 1, 2007 at St. Agnes Cathedral, Rockville Centre, N.Y.
Bishop Libasci will assist Bishop Murphy in leadership of the 1.4 million Catholics on Long Island and will serve as Episcopal Vicar, or the Bishop’s representative, for the Eastern Vicariate (Suffolk County). Bishop Libasci is the ninth auxiliary bishop named in the 50-year history of the Diocese of Rockville Centre. He will join two active auxiliary bishops, Bishop John C. Dunne, 69, and Bishop Paul H. Walsh, 69. Auxiliary Bishop Emil Wcela retired in April 2007 and Auxiliary Bishop James Daly retired in 1996.
Bishop Libasci will move next month to Southampton, N.Y., where he will reside at Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary parish.
Bishop Libasci is bi-ritual and celebrates the Divine Liturgy in the Byzantine Ruthenian Catholic Church.
He has a close relationship with his brother, two sisters, nieces and nephews.
Bishop Libasci celebrated his first Mass as bishop on Saturday, June 2,2007 at 5:00 p.m. at St. Therese of Lisieux parish, Montauk, N.Y.


Bishop John B. McCormack, who submitted his resignation as ninth bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Manchester 13 months ago, will hold a major news conference today.

Neither McCormack nor other diocesan officials would disclose the nature of the media conference, which will be held at St. Joseph Cathedral Rectory at 10 a.m.

“Everything that is going to be released will be released tomorrow,” diocesan spokesman Kevin J. Donovan said Sunday night.

McCormack, 76, submitted his resignation to Pope Benedict XVI shortly before he turned 75 on Aug. 12, 2010.

All bishops, archbishops and cardinals must submit their resignations to the Pope before their 75th birthdays.

The Manchester diocese includes the entire state and has an estimated 285,000 Catholics.

McCormack, a former auxiliary bishop in the Boston archdiocese under Cardinal Bernard F. Law, took over as bishop of Manchester on Sept. 22, 1998.

Several priests and laity privately expressed surprise the bishop would hold a major news conference at the cathedral rectory.

While Auxiliary Bishop Francis J. Christian keeps an apartment at the rectory, its current sole occupant is Msgr. Anthony R. Frontiero. Frontiero took over as rector of the cathedral on Sept. 1. Frontiero returned to New Hampshire this summer after completing a five-year assignment with the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace at the Vatican.


  1. Thank you for this post on Bishop Libasci. I just heard the news this morning at Mass but I had never heard of him and was glad to find your post about the new bishop. I will be praying for him too. You must have been surprised at the news - what a coincidence :)

  2. Thanks for visiting Mary :) .. Yes I'm VERY excited! :) From all I've heard and read, he's a Faith filled man that is close to the Two Hearts and has a big heart himself as well .. have a read here:

    From Andrew Nelson's blog on our new bishop

    Like any dutiful seminarian I have been spending much of my time this morning trying to learn a little about our new Bishop. I began early this morning by reading the press releases which all spoke of Bishop Libasci as being a "gentle pastor" with a big heart, a man dedicated to pastoring his flock with gentleness. Bishop Libasci has spent most of his [vocation] as a parish priest in the trenches.
    Eventually I came across a beautiful article, written a few years ago by, of all places the New York Times, praising the work of then Msgr. Libasci. Libasci was the pastor of a small parish hopeless divided over a construction project that became helplessly mired. Libasci was able to rally the people, build consensus and lead a parish from worshiping in the basement of the parish school to build a new church. Before arriving the parish church had been condemned and the parish was forced to gather each week for fifteen years in the basement of the school. Central to Libasci's response to this inherited challenge was the aim of uniting the people, rallying them around a hope filled plan for the future and an insistence on incorporating as much of the old church as possible. The people united behind his leadership, and they enthusiastically embraced the 3.5 million dollar building plan. Soon after, they faced a major disaster when the new foundation failed and needed to be rebuilt to the tune of an additional two million dollars. Libasci persisted and led the small parish of 600 to build their new Church, become united in faith, and together they rebuilt their parish literally from the foundation up. What a beautiful image and what a hope filled understanding of our faith.
    However, the most beautiful story of Peter Libasci the man, pastor and bishop is one that you will not find in any newspaper or press release. It is one I stumbled upon in a small blog maintained by a New York family for their closest family and friends. On it a woman shares a beautiful encounter she had with Bishop Libasci at a very painful time in her life.

    She writes:
    "I wanted to share something that happened at Ryan's wake last night. (Ryan had tragically died on a father/son camping trip)
    I looked up at the doorway and saw our newest bishop on Long Island, Bishop Peter Libasci walking in. Now, by marriage, Mary Ellen is related to a pretty high ranking monsignor in our diocese, so I figured he must have called for the Bishop to pay a visit. I went over to greet the Bishop, since I felt somewhat of a connection... as a young priest he was assigned to the parish I grew up in and his first funeral there was my mother's. He also confirmed my niece, while still a priest, with a special dispensation. Last year, this time as a bishop, he confirmed my daughter with this same niece as a sponsor. Full circle!
    The Bishop spent quite a lot of time with the Barretts and at the end of the evening, after he had left; I spoke with the Monsignor and thanked him for arranging this visit. He looked at me puzzled and said "I had nothing to do with that. The Bishop said he had read in the paper that Ryan had wanted to be a priest. All priests are entitled to a visit from the Bishop at their wake!"
    When I met Bishop Libasci at the door he said to me, "I just had to come and see the little priest."

    What else is there to say but welcome home Pastor and Bishop. We have been praying for you and we look with joy to the future we will share together.

    And that's just the way I feel!
    God bless Mary!