Most Reverend Herbert A. Bevard, Bishop of the Diocese of Saint Thomas in the Virgin Islands has written the following letter to his parishioners.
September 18, 2020
Dear Friends in Christ,
I am grateful to inform you that the Holy Father has accepted my resignation.
On July 6, 2020, I submitted my resignation to His Holiness Pope Francis. In doing so, I was anticipating my seventy-fifth birthday and seeking to provide the Diocese with a Bishop as soon as I reach the seventy-five-year age limit for Roman Catholic Bishops.
Regrettably, I have experienced some new and unanticipated medical conditions that unfortunately preclude my ability to continue to maintain my position in the Diocese of Saint Thomas. As a result, I have requested to the Holy Father, Pope Francis, that my resignation be immediate, so as not to inhibit the effective on-going pastoral leadership and care of the Diocese of Saint Thomas.
I have loved serving the People of God; the Clergy, Religious, Laity and the entire Virgin Islands community in the Diocese of Saint Thomas and will treasure the fond memories that we share together. It is this same love and concern for them, recognizing my own limitations, that now compel me to make this request.
I welcome and pledge my support to my successor in the hope that the Lord will bless his ministry among you. In the interim, the Holy Father has appointed the Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory, Archbishop of Washington D.C. as the Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Saint Thomas. Please, join me as I welcome the Archbishop and re-assure him of our unquestionable support.
As you continue to pray for me and as I continue to pray for you, I take this opportunity to present to you my profound esteem.
Sincerely, yours in Christ
+Herbert A. Bevard – Bishop of St. Thomas in the United States Virgin Islands (U.S.A.)
The Chancery• P.O. Box 301825 •Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands 00803-1825 340-774- 3166 or Fax 340-774-5816