Ranchi, Oct. 27: The Pope of Roman Catholic Church has fulfilled a request made by Cardinal Telesphore P. Toppo.
“Pope Francis has approved my plea to post an auxiliary bishop in Ranchi for assisting me in day-to-day activities of the Church,” Cardinal Toppo, who returned from a 10-day visit covering the Vatican (Rome, Italy) and Munich (Germany), said.
“I had an official meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican on October 17 during which I had formally requested him to post an auxiliary bishop at Ranchi to assist me in conducting religious functions and day-to-day administration. The Pope has granted his seal of approval,” Toppo told The Telegraph.
“Following the Pope’s nod, I conveyed the message to the Propaganda Fide, the office of the Holy See responsible for human resources management. I expect to get an assistant soon,” he added.
Toppos’ last assistant, Vinay Kandulna, was consecrated as the Bishop of Khunti in January 2013.
Khunti’s Bishop Stephen Tiru died in March 2012, after which Ranchi auxiliary bishop Kandulna was made the administrator to run the affairs of the Khunti diocese.
Though Kandulna stayed in Ranchi, he got busy with official commitments of the Khunti diocese, leaving him with no time to assist Toppo.
This January, the Vatican officially nominated Kandulna as Khunti Bishop, which forced him to leave Ranchi.
Cardinal Toppo said during his Vatican and Munich trips, he discussed with a number of church officials the 500-bed medical college and hospital project in Ranchi.
“The Mission of Munich promised to sponsor a prayer room to be constructed at the proposed medical college and hospital. We have a prayer room at St John’s Hospital in Bangalore. A similar one will be set up at the proposed Ranchi hospital,” Toppo said.
He, however, rued the fact that the Church was yet to get land for the project.
Amid all this, Toppo rued an FIR lodged with Chutia police in 2008 by one Satyeshwar Munda, who accused a ‘Cardinal’ of attacking him and snatching Rs 400 from him when he refused to convert to Christianity, has resurfaced. “I refuse to be bogged down by such petty matters,” he said.