Pope Francis appointed Monsignor John Folda of the Diocese of Lincoln as the new bishop in Fargo, North Dakota Monday. The former bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Fargo says he offers "congratulations, prayers and friendship" to the new bishop.
Folda will succeed Samuel Aquila who left as Fargo bishop last June to become archbishop of the Archdiocese of Denver.
Aquila says in a statement that Folda "is a man of deep faith, warm leadership, and unwavering fidelity to the teachings of the Church."
According to the North Dakota Catholic Conference, Bishop-elect Folda was born in Omaha on August 8, 1961. He is the son of Mabel and the late James Folda and the youngest of three children.
He grew up in Omaha where he attended St. Thomas More Grade School and Archbishop Ryan High School. He attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where he studied architecture and electrical engineering.
He entered the seminary in August 1983 and graduated in 1985 with a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy from St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia. He continued his theological studies at St. Charles Seminary where he earned a master of divinity degree in 1988 and a master of arts in theology in 1989.