Pope Francis Appoints Father Jacques Fabre the New Bishop of Charleston
Bishop-elect Fabre was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and has served as a chaplain to Haitian refugees in Guantanamo, Cuba, and as an administrator at the San Felipe de Jesús Mission in Georgia for the past 12 years.
Pope Francis has appointed Father Jacques Fabre the 14th Catholic bishop of Charleston, South Carolina.
The Vatican announced the 66-year-old priest’s appointment on Feb. 22. The Diocese of Charleston will host a livestreamed press conference with the newly appointed bishop at 10am EST.
Bishop-designate Fabre was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and has served as a chaplain to Haitian refugees in Guantanamo, Cuba, and as an administrator at the San Felipe de Jesús Mission in Georgia for the past 12 years.
He will succeed Bishop Robert Guglielmone, 76, who had reached the mandatory retirement age.
Originally from Haiti, Bishop-designate Fabre moved to New York City when he was in high school. After graduating from St. John’s University in New York, he joined the Missionaries of St. Charles, also known as the Scalabrinians.
Bishop-designate Fabre studied in Rome at the Pontifical Urban University, where he earned a master’s degree in divinity and a licentiate in human mobility (migration).
He was ordained to the priesthood in Brooklyn, New York, in 1986 at the age of 30. He served as chaplain to Haitian refugees at the Guantanamo base in Cuba from 1990 to 1991 and pastor of a parish in the Dominican Republic from 1991 to 2004.
After arriving in the state of Georgia in 2006, Bishop-designate Fabre served as the parochial vicar at St. Joseph’s parish in Athens and Holy Trinity parish in Peachtree City. While acting as the administrator at San Felipe de Jesús Mission in Forest Park, he also served as the director of the Hispanic Charismatic Renewal and as a member of the Archdiocese of Atlanta’s finance council. He is fluent in English, French, Italian, Spanish and Creole.
Bishop Guglielmone served as the bishop of Charleston for 13 years. Before Benedict XVI appointed him bishop in 2009, he served as rector of the cathedral of the diocese of Rockville Centre.
Bishop Guglielmone was cleared by the Vatican in December 2020 after an investigation into an allegation that he had sexually abused an 8-year-old boy beginning in 1978 when he was a priest in the Diocese of Rockville Centre, New York. The Vatican concluded that the allegation lacked the “semblance of truth” and was unfounded.
Following Pope Francis' promulgation of Traditionis Custodes (Guardians of the Tradition) in July 2021 Bishop Guglielmone in November 2021 implemented restrictions on the use of the traditional sacramental rites in the diocese.
The Catholic Diocese of Charleston was established in 1820 and covers the entire state of South Carolina. More than 5 million people live within the diocese, an estimated 10% of whom are Catholic.