Bishop Pablo Virgilio David of Kalookan was elected president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.
He was elected Thursday, during the first of the two-day bishops’ online plenary assembly.
The 62-year-old has been serving as conference vice president since December 2017, working alongside Archbishop Romulo Valles of Davao, the outgoing president.
Ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of San Fernando in 1983, David is known as one of the country’s leading Bible scholars.
In 2006, he was appointed auxiliary bishop of the same archdiocese, a post he served for around 14 years until he was transferred to the Kalookan diocese in January 2016.
In the bishops’ conference, he previously chaired the Episcopal Commission on Biblical Apostolate.
David was also among the five Filipino bishop delegates to the Synod of Bishops on the Word of God in the Vatican in 2008.
In 2019, the Ateneo de Manila University conferred its “Bukas Palad Award” on David for his service to the poor and “for his courage in speaking out against the evil of injustice and violence.
Meanwhile, the bishops’ leadership also elected Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara of Pasig as the new vice president.
Ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Manila in 1990, Vergara was appointed bishop of San Jose in Nueva Ecija in 2005. In 2011, he was named as the bishop of Pasig.
Vergara, 58, is currently a member of the CBCP Permanent Council and formerly chaired the Episcopal Commission on Social Communications.
The newly elected officials will begin their terms on Dec. 1, 2021.
The CBCP officials have two-year tenure in office, or a total of four to include the second term.
The CBCP meets in plenary session twice each year — in January and July, and its works are carried out by a number of commissions and committees.
When the plenary assembly is not in session, the Permanent Council acts for and on behalf of the entire organization.