Catholic Diocese of Richmond

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Pope Francis Names Washington Auxiliary Bishop to Lead Richmond Diocese

RICHMOND, Va. – Within hours of being announced as the 13th Bishop for the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, the Most Reverend Barry C. Knestout, 55, Auxiliary Bishop of Washington, celebrated Mass with Pastoral Center staff for the first time in the diocese he will soon oversee. Earlier, he held a press conference where he was introduced to staff and media.

“I thank our Holy Father, Pope Francis, for his trust in naming me Bishop of Richmond. I am honored to serve the Church in Richmond, which has a long and revered history of faith, and I will be blessed to serve the faithful across the beautiful and richly diverse Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Bishop-designate Knestout. “For 197 years the diocese has been led by men of happy memory who served with faith-filled wisdom and skill. I recognize especially Bishop Frank DiLorenzo, may God rest him, who served this diocese with devotion, steadfastness and a pastor’s heart.”

Bishop-designate Knestout succeeds the Most Rev. Francis X. DiLorenzo, 12th Bishop of Richmond, who died Aug. 17, 2017, at the age of 75.



A native of Maryland, Bishop-designate Barry Knestout, was born in Cheverly, MD, and ordained a priest in 1989 after completing his seminary studies at Mount St. Mary’s. He was named Monsignor by Pope John Paul II in 1999, and ordained an auxiliary bishop December 29, 2008 in the Archdiocese of Washington.

Bishop-designate Knestout will take possession of the Diocese of Richmond during a Mass of Installation which is scheduled for Jan. 12, 2018, at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in Richmond. For more information about the newly named Richmond bishop and to watch the complete video of the press conference, go to

The Diocese of Richmond spans 33,000 square miles and 74 counties across the central and southern portion of Virginia, stretching from the Eastern Shore to Southwest Virginia, and as far north as Harrisonburg in the Shenandoah Valley.


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