Updated: Mgr Charles Scicluna, the new Auxiliary Bishop of Malta, said today that he looked forward to returning to Malta after 17 years of service in the Holy See.
"I look forward to returning to Malta, to assist and to learn from Archbishop Cremona and to listen to and serve the Maltese people," he told timesofmalta.com.
The formal announcement of Mgr Scicluna's nomination was made today, and it was welcomed by the Curia, with Archbishop Cremona describing it as ' a grace'.
At his hometime Lija, bells pealed when the official announcement was made today.
The episcopal ordination will be held on November 24. Mgr Scicluna will be Titular Bishop of San Leone.
"As Auxiliary Bishop, His Lordship Monsignor Scicluna, 53, will be called to be the closest collaborator and advisor of His Grace Archbishop Paul Cremona O.P. with leadership responsibilities in the Curia and in diocesan pastoral ministry. On his Episcopal ordination on 24 November 2012, Monsignor Scicluna will become a member of the Maltese Episcopal Conference alongside the Archbishop and the Bishop of Gozo, His Lordship Monsignor Mario Grech," the Curia said.
Born in Canada, Monsignor Scicluna was educated in Malta and graduated Doctor of Laws from the University of Malta in 1984. He was ordained priest in 1986 by Archbishop Joseph Mercieca.
Mgr Scicluna graduated Doctor in Canon Law from the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, in 1991 and then served the Church in Malta on the Metropolitan Tribunal and in a number of parishes, including his home parish of Lija.
For the last 17 years he has served the Universal Church, working in the Vatican on the most challenging of cases under the leadership of Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI.
"Monsignor Scicluna is a renowned expert in Canon Law, highly respected among his peers around the world for his lecturing skills and his expertise in child protection issues. He is well loved for his amiable personality and for his sense of fairness. The Maltese public would remember his work in favour of the canonization of Saint George Preca between 1996 and 2007. The Holy Father has now called Monsignor Scicluna to the college of bishops with the mission to work for the Church in Malta under the leadership of Archbishop Paul Cremona O.P. " the Curia said.