Pope accepts resignation of Archbishop Kondrusiewicz and appoints Administrator
Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz has retired. On January 3, the day when the Metropolitan of Minsk and Mahiliou turned 75, Pope Francis accepted his resignation and appointed the administrator of the archdiocese.
“The Holy Father”, the statement reads, “has accepted the resignation from pastoral care, presented by Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz, Metropolitian Archbishop of Minsk-Mahiliou, in conformity with can. 401 §1, CIC and at the same time has appointed Apostolic Administrator sede vacante of the same Metropolitian See Bishop Kazimierz Wielikosielec, O.P., titular Bishop of Blanda and Auxiliary of the Diocese of Pinsk”.
Bishop Kazimierz Wielikosielec will soon turn 76 years old. In 1984, he graduated from the Riga Theological Seminary, and since 1999 he has been the Auxiliary Bishop of the Pinsk Diocese. In May 2020, despite the hierarch’s 75 years of age, Pope Francis allowed him to continue to serve for at least the next two years.
On August 31, 2020, border guards did not allow Archbishop Kondrusiewicz from Poland to Belarus without explanation. The Interior Ministry soon declared Kondrusiewicz’s passport invalid. Lukashenka also accused Kondrusiewicz several times of going to Poland “for consultations.” But on December 24, mediated by the Vatican, authorities allowed Kondrusiewicz to return to Belarus.