Bishop resigns from Diocese of Covington

Published: Jul. 13, 2021 at 9:03 AM EDT|Updated: Jul. 13, 2021 at 11:15 AM EDT
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COVINGTON, Ky. (WXIX) - The Vatican accepted the resignation of Bishop Roger Foys from the Diocese of Covington on Tuesday.

According to a statement from the Vatican, Msgr. John C. Iffert was named the new bishop of Covington.

Iffert was ordained a priest on June 7, 1997, for the Diocese of Belleville in Illinois.

Bishop-elect Iffert says he got the call to be the successor about two weeks ago.

“I am astounded and deeply grateful that Pope Francis has elected me to serve as the 11th Bishop of Covington and called me to share in apostolic ministry,” he said. “I am also grateful to Bishop Roger Foys for 19 years he has served the people of the Diocese of Covington faithfully, diligently and with a pastor’s heart for those who are hurting. I look forward to the opportunity to know Bishop Foys, to be his brother bishop and friend in Christ.”

Bishop-elect John Iffert
Bishop-elect John Iffert(Diocese of Covington)

Foys, 75, served as the bishop in Covington since 2002.

In his 19 years as bishop, the Diocese of Covington said he ordained 42 priests and revitalized Covington’s Cathedral Square.

“It is with gratitude to Almighty God that I welcome Rev. John C. Iffert as my successor as the 11th Bishop of the Diocese of Covington,” Foys said in a statement. “I am grateful also to our Holy Father Pope Francis for providing for the pastoral care of our Diocese by this appointment. Bishop-elect Iffert brings a wealth of pastoral and administrative experience to his episcopal ministry. He comes well-prepared to provide for the needs of our Diocese as a pastor with the heart of a shepherd.”

Iffert says he never had ambitions of becoming a bishop but is honored.

“I have ambitions to be holy and be a saint,” said Bishop-elect Iffert. “If I could do that for the church in Covington, then praise be God.”

Iffert says when he takes on the new position there is extensive work to be done. Such as restoring trust in the church, recruiting priests and meeting the people of northern Kentucky and surrounding areas.

The Rite of Ordination and Installation of Bishop-elect Iffert is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 30 at 3 p.m. in the Cathedral Basilica of the Assumption in Covington.

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