Cardinal names Father Cristiano Barbosa Central Region episcopal vicar

The Archdiocese of Boston announced May 30 that Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley has appointed Father Cristiano Guilherme Borro Barbosa as episcopal vicar for the archdiocese's Central Region effective July 1. Father Jonathan Gaspar, the pastor of St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Brookline, has been serving as interim regional episcopal vicar since Feb. 1.

A regional episcopal vicar assists the cardinal in the governance and oversight of the clergy, parishes, schools, and apostolates within his region and also celebrates the Sacrament of Confirmation. Regional episcopal vicars are also members of the cardinal's cabinet, the Presbyteral Council, and the Board of Consultors.

In a letter to the priests and parishes of the archdiocese announcing the appointment, Vicar General Bishop Mark O'Connell said that Father Barbosa will also serve as Secretary for Evangelization and Discipleship, taking over from Father Paul Soper, who was named Secretary of Ministerial Personnel effective July 1.

Father Barbosa currently serves on the faculty of St. John's Seminary teaching theology and also serves part-time at Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston. He holds a number of advanced degrees, including a licentiate of philosophy from the Universidade de Sagrado Coracao in Brazil, a master's degree in psychology from Pontificia Universidade Catolica de Minas Gerais in Brazil and a licentiate in sacred theology and a doctorate in sacred theology from Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

Born in Adamantina, Brazil, Father Barbosa was ordained to the priesthood in December 2007 at the Diocesan Shrine of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Bauru in the Diocese of Bauru, Brazil. He later served in several parishes in the Archdiocese of Boston, including St. Anthony of Padua and St. Francis of Assisi Parishes in Cambridge, and Holy Family, Immaculate Conception, and St. Anthony of Padua Parishes in Lowell. He was incardinated as a priest of the Archdiocese of Boston in 2021.