WASHINGTON (May 7, 2004) -- Pope John Paul II has named two currently serving Chaplains as Auxiliary Bishops of the Archdiocese for the Military Services, U.S.A. They are:
--Monsignor Joseph W. Estabrook, priest of the Diocese of Albany and Chaplain of the United States Navy. Msgr. Estabrook was named Titular Bishop of Flenucleta.
--Monsignor Richard B. Higgins, priest of the Diocese of Sacramento and Chaplain of the US Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs. He was appointed Titular Bishop of Case Calane.
Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, announced the appointments.
Joseph Estabrook was born May 19, 1944, in Kingston, New York.
He holds a Master of Divinity degree from Christ the King Seminary, New York. During his military service he studied Ethics at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley.
Msgr. Estabrook was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Albany on May 30, 1969.
Prior to entering the chaplaincy, he served as associate pastor of St. Vincent de Paul parish, Albany, for three years and for five years as the Director of the Diocesan Family Life Office.
After entering the chaplaincy of the U.S. Navy in 1977, he served as Chaplain at Naval Hospital, Jacksonville, Florida, 1977-1980; USMC, Quantico, Virginia, 1980-1984; USS Carl Vinson, 1984-1988; Department of Navy, Executive Assistant, 1994-1997. He was appointed to the Naval Station in Pearl Harbor as Command Chaplain in 1997.
Bishop-designate Estabrook holds the rank of Navy Captain and has served Navy and Marine personnel throughout the United States, in Sigonella, Italy, and in the Office of the Chief of Chaplains, Washington, D.C.
Richard B. Higgins was born in Longford, Ireland on February 22, 1944.
After graduating from St. Mel's College, Ireland, he studied philosophy and theology at the Pontifical Irish College in Rome. In 1968 he received the Licentiate in Sacred Theology from the Pontifical Lateran University.
Msgr. Higgins was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Sacramento on March 9, 1968.
He served as associate pastor at St. Rose Catholic Church, Roseville, California, and St. Patrick Church, Grass Valley, before entering the military in 1974.
As a chaplain, he served at Lowry Air Force Base, Colorado, 1974-1975; NAS, Keflavik, Iceland, 1976-1977; Laughlin AFB Texas, 1977-1980; Bitburg air base, Germany, 1980-1982; Malstrom AFB, Montana, 1982-1984; Mitchel AFB, NY, 1985-1988; Pope AFB, North Carolina, 1988-1990; Wing Chaplain, Air Force Academy, Colorado, 1990-1993; Wing Chaplain, Nellis AFB, Nevada, 1993-1995; HQ, USAF, Europe, 1995-1997; HQ, PACAF (Pacific), 1997-2000; and the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado, 2000-2003.
Among the military awards received by Bishop-designate Higgins are the Legion of Merit, the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Navy Outstanding Unit Award, and the National Defense Medal.
The Archdiocese for the Military Services, U.S.A., based in Washington, D.C., is responsible for the pastoral care of the Catholic men and women who serve on active duty in the five branches of the U.S. Armed Forces and their dependents, more than 1.4 million persons. Most Reverend Edwin F. O'Brien is Archbishop for the Military Services.