Statement on the Retirement of Auxiliary Bishop Octavio Cisneros



Adriana Rodriguez

John Quaglione 

Statement on the Retirement of Auxiliary Bishop Octavio Cisneros


The Diocese of Brooklyn announces that today, our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has accepted the resignation of Octavio Cisneros from the office of auxiliary bishop for the Diocese of Brooklyn.

“I am grateful to Bishop Cisneros for his willingness to serve and was honored to ordain him and consecrate him as an auxiliary Bishop on June 6, 2006.  He will remain as pastor at the Church of the Holy Child Jesus & St. Benedict Joseph Labre in Richmond Hill, Queens, and will continue to serve as Vicar for Hispanic Concerns. We thank Bishop Cisneros for his years of Diocesan leadership and are grateful he will continue to serve the Diocese in Brooklyn and Queens,” said the Most Reverend Nicholas DiMarzio, Bishop of Brooklyn.

As required by Canon (Church) law, upon turning 75, all bishops must submit a letter of resignation from the ecclesiastical office that they hold. It is up to the Holy See to determine when to accept that resignation. In the case of auxiliary bishops, the acceptance of a resignation typically occurs shortly after turning 75.

“I am most grateful to Pope Benedict and Bishop DiMarzio for giving me the fullness of the priesthood in 2006 so that I can help minister as auxiliary bishop, which has been rewarding and fulfilling for me. I am thankful to Pope Francis for his continued support of our bishops. He is an inspiration for all of us. I have lived a very happy priesthood in the Diocese of Brooklyn for 49 years and look forward to continuing my priestly ministry,” said Octavio Cisneros, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Brooklyn.

Bishop Cisneros was born in Las Villas, a province of Cuba, on July 19, 1945. In October 1961, while a high school student, he came to the United States as a political refugee as part of Operation Peter Pan, a Catholic humanitarian effort that brought 14,000 unaccompanied minors to the U.S. from Cuba.

He was ordained a priest of the Brooklyn Diocese on May 29, 1971, and has been pastor at the Church of the Holy Child Jesus & St. Benedict Joseph Labre since 2007. He has also served at St. Michael’s Church and as pastor of Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Corona.

Throughout his priesthood, he has been appointed as an Episcopal, or Territorial, Vicar in the Brooklyn East Vicariate, and as rector of Cathedral Seminary Residence in Douglaston. He was named a Prelate of Honor by Pope John Paul II in 1988.

Bishop Cisneros has also been involved with the Northeast Catholic Center for Hispanics, the “Instituto Nacional Hispano de Liturgia,” the Bishop’s Committee on the Liturgy and the Pastors’ Advisory Committee. He has served on the Board of Governors of Immaculate Conception Seminary and as past President of the Conference of Diocesan Directors for the Spanish Apostolate.

Attached is a photo of Bishop Cisneros.

Press release issued by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: