Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wim Eijk named archbishop of Utrecht

Pope Benedictus XVI has named the bishop of Groningen-Leeuwarden, Wim Eijk, archbishop of Utrecht. He succeeds Cardinal Ad Simonis, who stepped down on Saturday.

Willem Jacobus Eijk (54) is a doctor and theologist. He was named bishop of the Netherlands' most northerly diocese in 1999.

As archbishop of Utrecht he is the 70th successor to Saint Willibrord (circa 658-739), who brought Christianity to the Netherlands.

He is the tenth archbishop of Utrecht since 1853, when the Dutch government allowed the Vatican to once again appoint bishops in the Netherlands.

Eijk's predecessor Simonis was also president of the conference of bishops.

The bishops must decide whether Eijk is to take on this function as well.



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