Religious fervour and solemnity marked the installation of Jaya Rao Polimera as new Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Eluru here on Thursday. The rite of Episcopal ordination took place in the presence of a battery of archbishops, priests and faithful from the Roman Catholic Mission (RCM) who descended on the premises of the St. Ann’s College, the venue of the high-profile pontifical event, from different parts of the State.
The 48-year-old Jaya Rao Polimera, hailing from Warangal district, has succeeded late John Mulagada, the first Bishop of the Eluru diocese after a gap of four years. Archbishop Salvatore Pennachio, who acted as the principal consecrator, presented Jaya Rao Polimera with an Episcopal ring and a liturgical head dress called mitre as a mark of his installation as the pontifical head of the diocese amid hymns. After the formal announcement of the consecration, the new bishop was escorted to the cathedra by the principal consecrator and the other bishops. It was followed by a mass conducted by the presiding consecrator Prakash Mallavarapu, also the Archbishop of Visakhapatnam and Apostolic Administrator of Eluru Diocese. Even as Jaya Rao Polimera lay prostrate before the principal consecrator, the later laid his hands on the new bishop, in silence.
After him, all the other consecrators, who included Tumma Bala, Archbishop of Hyderabad and Gali Bali, Bishop of Guntur Diocese, followed suit. The principal consecrator also anointed the head of the new bishop with chrism oil as is the custom of investiture when he knelt before the former.
Later, the bishops and a galaxy of the clergy and the faithful present on the occasion greeted Jaya Rao Polimera with a kiss on his Episcopal ring.