The Holy Father has appointed Bishop Fidelis Lionel Emmanuel Fernando as bishop of Mannar, Sri Lanka, transferring him from the office of auxiliary of the Archdiocese of Colombo and from the titular see of Orta.
Bishop Fidelis Lionel Emmanuel Fernando
Bishop Fidelis Lionel Emmanuel Fernando was born on May 20, 1948 in Jaffna. His parents are of Vembar (Tuticorin diocese) origin and he hails from a big family, four of whom are religious-two priests and two nuns. Bishop Fernando is the youngest son of late V. Xavier Bastian Fernando (Civil Engineer) and late Gnanasorubi Fernando of Vembar, South India.
He was assigned the titular see of Orta. After his primary and secondary school education at St. Benedict’s College, in Colombo and entered the Minor Seminary of St. Aloysius of Columbo Archdiocese.
After completing his studies at the Minor Seminary, he was admitted to the National Seminary of Kandy for philosophical studies. He was sent to Rome, for his theological studies where he obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Theology and a Licentiate in Moral Theology at Urbaniana University. From 1981 to 1987, while he was teaching at the National Major Seminary of Kandy, he went to the Catholic University of Washington (U.S.A.), where he obtained his Doctorate in Theology.
Pope Paul VI ordained him a priest on Jan. 6, 1973 in the Vatican and Pope Benedict XVI appointed him as the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Colombo on Nov. 28, 2011. He has held the post of professor of Theology and also of rector at the national seminary, and Episcopal Vicar for the South in the Archdiocese of Colombo. At present, he is the Episcopal Vicar for the Tamil Apostolate in the archdiocese.