A Dominican Bishop in the Peruvian Amazon

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Bishop David Martínez de Aguirre Guinea, O.P.
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Bishop David Martinez De Aguirre Guinea, OP has succeeded Bishop Francisco Gonzalez Hernandez, OP as the Bishop of the Apostolic Vicariate of Puerto Maldonado, Peru. The resignation of Bishop Francisco Gonzalez Hernandez on health grounds has been accepted by the Holy Father. Both bishops are sons of the Province of Spain and Bishop Francisco has been in charge of the Apostolic Vicariate since 2008.

Bishop David was born in 1970 in Vitoria (Spain). After primary and secondary studies in the Marianist School of Santa Maria Ikastetxea of Vitoria-Gasteiz, he studied at the Higher Institute of Philosophy in Valladolid (1993-1995) and later at the Faculty of Theology of San Esteban in Salamanca (1995-1998). He graduated in Biblical Theology at the University of Deusto in Bilbao, and took a course at École Biblique, Jerusalem (1998-2000).

He made his solemn profession in 1993 and was ordained to the priesthood in 1999. His first assignment was at the Church of the Incarnation, Bilbao.

In 2000, he moved to Peru to pursue his dream of working as a missionary in the Amazon. His first assignment was at the Mission of San Jose, Koribeni, in the Apostolic Vicariate of Puerto Maldonado, and as professor of Biblical Theology at the Seminary of the Vicariate.

From 2001 to November 2014 he was in charge of the Mission of Kirigueti and from 2004 was a councillor in the Dominican Regional Vicariate Santa Rosa de Lima. In the past four years, he has worked as the head of the Mission of San Pedro Martir Timpía and as board member of the Cultural Center of José Pio Aza, in the city of Lima.

In November 2014, he was appointed Coadjutor Bishop and has since assisted Bishop Francesco in the pastoral care and governance of the Apostolic Vicariate.

Bishop David is in charge of a large area of the Peruvian Amazon with scanty populations of different ethnic and language groups, often scattered in areas that are very difficult to access. This is a huge challenge to pastoral work in the Vicariate. However, this is not a new challenge for Bishop David who has been living and working in the area, in one of the most remote part for the past 15 years.

 

(23 June 2015)