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Argentine archbishop—Cardinal Fernández’s successor—resigns at 55

May 27, 2024

» Continue to this story on Vatican Press Office

CWN Editor's Note: Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Archbishop Gabriel Antonio Mestre, 55, who succeeded Cardinal Víctor Manuel Fernández as archbishop of La Plata, Argentina.

The prelate’s resignation comes eight months after his installation, and just two days after he exhorted civic leaders to “listen to the heartbeat of the geographical and existential peripheries” at a commemoration of the nation’s May Revolution.

Ordained to the priesthood in 1997 and appointed bishop of Mar del Plata in 2017, Mestre was president of the Argentine bishops’ Commission for Catechesis, Animation and Biblical Pastoral Ministry when the Pontiff appointed him archbishop of La Plata last July. He was installed as archbishop two months later.

Although the Vatican announcement did not disclose the reason for the resignation, the prelate said he resigned at the Pontiff’s request “after confronting some different perceptions with what happened in the Diocese of Mar del Plata from November 2023 to the present.” (Two bishops resigned before their installations.)

Archbishop Mestre added that he was “conscious of my weakness and the human weakness of the beautiful Church that is my home and my family.”

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