Roman Catholics in the eastern half of North Carolina have a new leader. Bishop Francis Gossman of the Raleigh Diocese, who turned 76 in April, is retiring. To replace him, Pope Benedict ll has appointed 48-year-old Bishop Michael Burbidge. Burbidge has been an Auxiliary Bishop in Philadelphia since 2002. The Raleigh Diocese is in charge of Roman Catholic churches that serve more than 172,000 Catholics in 54 counties of central and Eastern North Carolina.
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