Pope names Filipino archbishop as envoy to Israel and Cyprus

Archbishop Adolfo Tito Yllana, the new apostolic nuncio to Israel and Cyprus and apostolic delegate to Jerusalem and Palestine. 

Pope Francis has appointed a Filipino archbishop as the Vatican’s ambassador to the Holy Land, the birthplace of Christianity.

In a statement on Thursday night, the Vatican announced that the new apostolic nuncio to Israel and Cyprus is Archbishop Adolfo Tito Yllana.

At the same time, the pope named the 73-year-old as apostolic delegate to Jerusalem and Palestine.

Prior to his appointment, Yllana has been serving as apostolic nuncio to Australia since 2015.

He succeeds Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli, who was appointed Apostolic Nuncio to India in March.

The prelate has represented the Holy See on the four continents of Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

Born in Naga City on February 6, 1948, Yllana was ordained priest for the Archdiocese of Caceres on March 19, 1972.

He later earned a doctorate in civil and canon law, and entered the Ecclesiastical Academy, the Holy See’s school of diplomacy.

After his studies, he entered the diplomatic service of the Holy See, serving successively at Pontifical Representations in Ghana, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Lebanon, Hungary and Taiwan.

In December 2001, St. John Paul II appointed him as apostolic nuncio to Papua New Guinea and consecrated him bishop on January 6, 2002, in St. Peter’s Basilica.

Subsequently, he entrusted him with the leadership of the nunciature in the Solomon Islands.

In 2006 Pope Benedict XVI appointed him as apostolic nuncio to Pakistan and to the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2010.

In February 2015, Pope Francis appointed him as apostolic nuncio to Australia.

Yllana is one of the three Filipino apostolic nuncios who are active in the service. The others are Archbishop Bernardito Auza, the nuncio to Spain, and Archbishop Francisco Padilla, the nuncio to Guatemala. CBCP News

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