ROCHESTER, N.Y.  — Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Salvatore Matano, who had led the Diocese of Burlington, Vt., since 2005, as bishop of Rochester, succeeding Bishop Matthew Clark.

“My first priority will be to bring people back to Mass,” Bishop Matano said Nov. 6 at a press conference announcing his appointment, adding that “my strategic plan is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

“If you are not practicing the faith, please come home. Come home. We miss you,” he said.

Bishop Matano said that holiness isn't something “magical,” but means “to be absorbed by Jesus.”

He furthermore requested prayers from the people. His Mass of installation will be celebrated Jan. 3, 2014.

In other pontifical acts, Pope Francis appointed Archbishop Santo Gangemi as apostolic nuncio to Guinea, Father Ailton Menegussi as bishop of Crateus in Brazil and Father Pierre Jubinville as bishop of San Pedro in Paraguay.

Savatore Matano was born in Providence, R.I., Sept. 15, 1946, and began his studies at Our Lady of Providence Seminary. He was ordained a priest of the Providence Diocese in 1971, and the following year, he earned a theology licentiate from the Pontifical Gregorian University.

As a priest, he served as a parish priest, high-school teacher, college professor, in various posts at the diocesan chancery, with the office of the apostolic nuncio to the U.S., and obtained a doctorate in canon law from the Gregorian in 1983.

Bishop Matano was appointed coadjutor bishop of Burlington in 2005 and succeeded as bishop of the diocese later the same year.

Bishop Emeritus Clark, whom Bishop Matano succeeds, had led Rochester since 1979, and retired Sept. 21, 2012, shortly after his 75th birthday.

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, the metropolitan archdiocese over Rochester, wrote that “Bishop Matano has been an excellent bishop of Burlington, and I know that he will be warmly welcomed as he undertakes his new pastoral duties in Rochester.”

He said, “I look forward to working with Bishop Matano in caring for God’s people in New York.”