It is a great day for Providence. Today Bishop Robert C. Evans was ordained at the cathedral of Sts. Peter and Paul by his North American College classmate, Bishop Thomas Tobin. The diocesan clergy was out in force, as were numerous prelates from New England and beyond (more than 25). Geographically small but numbering over one million Catholics, Providence has a lot of purple. Bishop Evans joins retired bishop and co-consecrator Gelineau, retired Bishops Mulvey, Boland OP, Roque, Abp. Pearce, SM–all residing in Providence, and will be one of seven living native sons of the Diocese of Providence to be named Successor to the Apostles: co-consecrator Bp. Matano (Burlington), Bp. McManus (Worcester), Boland (ret), Roque (ret), Riley (ret), Angel (ret). As usual, the Gregorian Concert Choir under the direction of Msgr. Anthony Mancini was outstanding.
62 year old Robert Evans was born in Moultri, Georgia but grew up in the Italian enclave of Federal Hill in Providence, where churches, fountains and fine Italian restaurants still define the neighborhood. From public elementary school he graduated from Our Lady of Providence Seminary High School, earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Our Lady of Providence College Seminary, was assigned to the Pontifical North American College in Rome, received an S.T.B. from the Pontifical Gregorian University, an S.T.M. from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas at the Angelicum, and later returned to the Greg for an S.T. L. in Canon Law.
Bishop Evans brings a broad depth of experience, from assistant pastorates, hospital chaplaincies, secretary to Bishop Gelineau, Vice-Chancellor, Chancellor, priest’s personnel director, director of the Institute for Continuing Theological Education and faculty member at the North American College, Secretary at the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, DC, and most recently pastor.
Final remarks included a public pledge of fidelity to the Holy Father by the newly ordained, and a few memorables from Bishop Tobin, (referring to Bp. Evans) “He is certainly a better dressed bishop…I can borrow things now”, “The kid from Federal Hill did well!”, and “This is my first episcopal ordination…I feel like a proud papa!”. We wish Bishop Evans God’s blessings on his new role as shepherd. Ad multos annos!
Here are some more pictures from the ordination…sorry for the poor quality as they are live feed shots.