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New Bishop appointed for North Country

TICONDEROGA - The Diocese of Ogdensburg will be getting a new bishop.

Pope Benedict XVI has appointed the Most Rev. Robert J. Cunningham, 65, as the 10th bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Syracuse.

He will succeed Bishop James M. Moynihan, who has served that diocese since May 29, 1995.

As the Ogdensburg Diocese bishop, Cunningham oversees the Catholic churches in the North Country, including Clinton, Essex and Franklin counties.

He has served in that position since March 2004.

Cunningham is scheduled to be in Ticonderoga Sunday, April 26, to confer the sacrament of Confirmation on young people of the Essex deanery. Confirmation will be held at 3 p.m. at St. Mary's Church.

Cunningham will be installed on May 26 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, located in downtown Syracuse.

From now until his installation, Cunningham will serve as administrator of the Diocese of Ogdensburg.

"Although we greet this news with sadness and a great sense of loss for us here in the Diocese of Ogdensburg, we realize that it is a sign of great respect that our Holy Father has for Bishop Cunningham," the diocese said in a news release.

"The Diocese of Syracuse is receiving a wonderful gift in Bishop Cunningham," Msgr. Robert L. Lawler, former vicar general of the Diocese of Ogdensburg, said in the release. "He is a real shepherd of souls, always concerned for those in his care. All his talents of leadership and gracious personal gifts he gives in service to his people. Our great loss is a special gift for the people of Syracuse."

No information was available about Cunningham's replacement.

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