Detroit Auxiliary Bishop Daniel E. Flores, 48, has been named the next bishop of the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas, by Pope Benedict XVI. The Diocese of Brownsville is in the southern part of the state, along the Rio Grande, and has a Catholic population of 800,000 and a total population of 940,000. Bishop Flores will be installed on Feb. 2. He will succeed Bishop Raymundo Peña, who in February of this year reached the age of 75, the age at which bishops are mandated to submit their resignations to the Holy See.
Bishop Flores has served as a regional bishop in Detroit since November 29, 2006. He has overseen seven of the eighteen vicariates in the Detroit archdiocese, has advised the archdiocese on immigration issues, and has helped to established the Office for Hispanic Affairs. Prior to coming to Detroit, he had served in a number of capacities in the Diocese of Corpus Christi, Texas, including rector of Corpus Christi Cathedral, Chancellor, Diocesan Master of Ceremonies, Secretary to the Bishop, Rector of the Saint John Vianney House of Studies, and Episcopal Vicar for Vocations.
In an open letter, Bishop Flores expressed gratitude for the "…countless blessings (that) came to me through the love and friendship offered to me by so many" in the Detroit archdiocese.
Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron offers the following comments on Bishop Flores' appointment:
"The years of Bishop Flores' ministry here in the Archdiocese have been a great blessing. In particular he has placed the ministry to Hispanic Catholics here on a solid foundation. All of us have come to love him, and I know that he loves us. We are very sad to lose him, but we understand that his being sent to Brownsville is God's will, for him, for the priests and people there, and for us.
And so we rejoice! Bishop Flores has a remarkable grace of Christian fraternity, of being a brother. He has shared that gift with me personally, and I thank God and him for this blessing. He goes with the love and prayers of all us, his family in Detroit – where he will always find a ready welcome 'back home.'"