Pope Benedict XVI has appointed the chancellor of the Catholic Diocese of Wichita to be the new bishop for the Diocese of Dodge City.
The Rev. John Brungardt succeeds Bishop Ronald Gilmore, whose resignation was accepted by the pope.
Brungardt, 52, said he was humbled by the appointment.
"With trust in God, I hope to be a good shepherd to the people of southwest Kansas... ," he said in a statement.
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"Building on the foundation of Bishop Gilmore and his predecessors, the priests, religious, and laity, I hope to carry on the mission of spreading the Gospel message of Jesus Christ to the people of the diocese."
Along with his duties as chancellor, Brungardt is the pastor of St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church in St. Mark.
Gilmore has served as bishop of the Dodge City Diocese since July 16, 1998. In a statement posted on the diocese's website, he said he asked the pope last year for permission to retire.
"For me, being a bishop has always felt like a burden," Gilmore's statement reads, in part.
"It became increasingly clear to me over the last two years that the Diocese needed fresh eyes, fresh hands, and a fresh heart. I have done all I know how to do, all my strength permitted me to do, all my weakness allowed me to do.
"The good priests and good people of this Diocese deserve better from their Bishop than what I was giving them."
Gilmore plans to remain in Dodge City.
Brungardt was ordained to the priesthood on May 23, 1998, by Bishop Eugene Gerber at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita.
Wichita Bishop Michael Jackels said Pope Benedict XVI "really knows how to pick them, for he has chosen one of the exemplary priests of the Diocese of Wichita."
"We are happy to share with others God's gifts to us, but we will still feel the loss. We will miss him and his ministry.
"The people of southwestern Kansas are getting one of our best, a real gem of a priest."