On Wednesday, December 27, the Holy See announced that Pope Francis had named the Most Rev. Jorge Enrique Izaguirre Rafael, C.S.C., currently the Bishop Prelate of the Prelature of Chuquibamba, Peru, as the new Bishop of the Diocese of Chosica. He will take possession of his new diocese on February 24, 2024.
It is in the Diocese of Chosica where the principal ministries of the Congregation of Holy Cross in Peru are located, including El Señor de la Esperanza Parish, Fe y Alegría 25 School, Yancana Huasy (a center for disabled children and their families, Family Rosary, and the Pastoral Institute of the Family (INFAM).
In the same announcement, Pope Francis accepted the retirement of the Most Rev. Arthur J. Colgan, C.S.C., Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Chosica. Bishop Colgan had previously submitted his resignation, required by canon law, for having turned 75 years old.
“As members of the Congregation of Holy Cross, we are humbled and proud that the Holy Father has chosen one of our own to be the next bishop of the Diocese of Chosica,” said Br. Paul Bednarczyk, C.S.C., Superior General of the Congregation of Holy Cross. “Bishop Jorge is a shepherd who ministers with the heart of Jesus in his closeness to the poor and most vulnerable. We promise him our fraternal support and prayers as he continues his ministry as shepherd of God’s People in Chosica.”
“We also this day give thanks for the long and distinguished pastoral service that Bishop Arthur rendered to the People of God in Peru, and for so many years in the Diocese of Chosica, first as Vicar General and then as Auxiliary Bishop,” continued Br. Bednarczyk. “With the Lord, we say to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.'”
Bishop Izaguirre will be only the second bishop in the almost 27-year history of the Diocese of Chosica, as he succeeds the founding bishop, the Most Rev. Norbert Klemens Strotmann Hoppe, M.S.C.
The Congregation’s presence in the Diocese of Chosica actually predates the establishment of the diocese, as the first Holy Cross religious arrived to Canto Grande in 1977, when it was still part of the Archdiocese of Lima, to found what is today one of the largest parishes in Peru.
This year Holy Cross has been celebrating the 60th anniversary of its arrival to Peru, thus meaning that in many ways the growth of the Congregation and its mission in Peru and the growth and the mission of the Diocese of Chosica have been interconnected. This connection deepens today with the appointment of Bishop Izaguirre as the local bishop.
“The appointment of Bishop Jorge’s to the Diocese of Chosica comes as sign joy and hope for the Congregation of Holy Cross and the People of God in the diocese,” said Fr. José Ahumada, C.S.C., Superior of the District of Chile-Peru. “Prior to his naming as bishop, Monseñor Jorge was known as a great pastor, close to the people, walking with them, and working together to hasten the coming of God’s kingdom."
“That same pastoral care and closeness were the hallmarks of his episcopal ministry in the Prelature of Chuquibamba. I know the people there will be sad to see Bishop Jorge go, just as the people in Chosica are happy now to receive him. We look forward to continue working closely with Bishop Jorge and the Diocese of Chosica in the work of making God known, loved, and served," said Fr. Ahumada.
A native son of Peru, Bishop Izaguirre was born on January 14, 1968, in Casma, Ancash. After studying theology in Chile, he professed Final Vows in the Congregation on January 14, 1996, and was ordained on February 15, 1997. After Ordination, Fr. Izaguirre served as Assistant Pastor at Santa Cruz Parish in Chimbote, Peru. In 1999, he was transferred to Lima to take charge of the house of formation where he served for 6 years. In 2004, Fr. Izaguirre went to the United States to study at Weston Jesuit School of Theology and Boston College, where he earned his Master in Theology.
He returned to Peru and in 2007 became pastor at El Señor de la Esperanza Parish in Canto Grande, which is part of the Diocese of Chosica. The parish boundaries include almost a quarter of a million people, most of whom are Catholic. Fr. Izaguirre was appointed to the General Council of the Congregation in 2010. While continuing to serve as the Fourth Assistant, he was appointed in 2013 as the new Director of Formation and Superior of the International House of Formation in Santiago.
It was while serving in that capacity that on May 11, 2015, Pope Francis appointed him the Bishop Prelate of the Territorial Prelature of Chuquibamba. He was ordained on July 10, 2015, in a Mass outside of San Miguel Cathedral in Camaná. Bishop Strotmann, who he now replaces in the Diocese of Chosica, presided at the Mass and was the principal consecrator. The principal co-consecrators were the Most Rev. Luis Armando Bambarén, S.J., Bishop of Chimbote, and the Most Rev. Mario Busquets Jordá, Prelate Emeritus of Chuquibamba.
Bishop Izaguirre's eight years as Bishop of Chuquibamba have been marked by his closeness to the people and synodal leadership. He has started several pastoral initiatives, especially with young people. In the Peruvian Episcopal Conference, Bishop Izaguirre has served in various roles, including Bishop of Prison Ministry, elected President of the Episcopal Commission for Social Action and Human Mobility (2017-2025), member of the Board of Caritas of Peru, and member of the Episcopal Commissions for the Protection of Minors and for Consecrated Life.
“This is a great day for Holy Cross, the Church and, in particular, the people of God in the Diocese of Chosica,” said Fr. William M. Lies, C.S.C., Superior of the United States Province of Priests and Brothers, which oversees the Congregation's missions in Peru and Chile. “We pray for Bishop Jorge and ask St. John the Evangelist to intercede for him as he continues to proclaim the Gospel. We pray in gratitude too for the exemplary service offered by Bishop Arthur Colgan as Auxiliary Bishop there, along with all the religious who have and are serving the people of Peru and throughout Latin America.”