Bishop Robert Brennan was named the eighth bishop of the Diocese of Brooklyn on Tuesday during a mass at St. Joseph’s Co-Cathedral in the Prospect Heights section of Brooklyn.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, and Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States of America, presided over the Installation Mass. Brennan, who led the Diocese of Columbus, Ohio, since 2019, has been appointed by Pope Francis to succeed the bishop. Nicholas DiMarzio in September.
Brennan, 59, was born in the Bronx and raised in Lindenhurst, LI. He was ordained a priest in the Diocese of Rockville Center on Long Island in 1989.
The diocese serves approximately 1.5 million Catholics in the boroughs of Queens and Brooklyn. DiMarzio was appointed bishop by Pope Saint John Paul II in 2003. He submitted a resignation letter on his 75th birthday in 2019 under Church law. The pontiff formally accepted the resignation before appointing Brennan.
“The Church that ‘went out’ is a community of missionary disciples who take the first step, who are involved and united, who bear fruit and rejoice,” Brennan said in a statement issued by the diocese.
“An evangelizing community knows that the Lord took the initiative, he loved us first, and therefore we can move forward, boldly take the initiative, reach out to others, look for those who have fallen, stand at the crossroads and welcome the outcast. “
There were 45 bishops, including two cardinals, over 300 priests and 100 deacons present for the celebration.
According to tradition, Bishop Brennan knocked on the doors of the cathedral and was admitted by the rector who received the new bishop, offering him a crucifix to kiss and the aspergillum, the liturgical instrument used to sprinkle holy water. The bishop then sprinkled himself as well as the people present.
Mass then began with Cardinal Dolan greeting the people and inviting Bishop Peter to read an apostolic letter. After the reading, Brennan showed the letter to the College of Consultors, to the Chancellor of the Diocese, to the Curia and then to the members of the congregation.
Brennan then sat in the Cathedra, the bishop’s teaching chair, and was presented with her crozier, or a hooked staff. The Cathedra now bears the Brennan coat of arms.
Subsequently, he greeted various representatives of the diocese, both clergy and laity.