A Bronx priest with a podcast and a flair for rap music will become the youngest bishop in the United States and one of the youngest in the world, as the Vatican announced a series of appointments on Tuesday.
Father Joseph Espaillat, 45, currently pastor of St. Anthony of Paduah Parish, was appointed an auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese. He will be ordained to the episcopacy March 1 along with Father John Bonnici, who was also elevated to auxiliary bishop.
The Catholic News Agency reported that Espaillat would be the youngest U.S. bishop, almost 15 months younger than the next on the list.
Espaillat, often called "Father J" online, is a former parochial vicar and pastor of Saint Peter’s Parish in Yonkers, parochial vicar of Our Lady Queen of Martyrs Parish in Manhattan, and Director of Youth Ministry for the archdiocese. He was ordained to the priesthood in 2003.
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He previously launched a podcast and YouTube series last year called "Sainthood in the City," and has been seen rapping in multiple YouTube videos as well.