Jacksonville, Fla. – Two short months ago on May 24, Pope Francis announced the appointment of Father Erik Pohlmeier as the next bishop of the Diocese of St. Augustine. For the past 24 years, Bishop Pohlmeier has served as a pastor in the Diocese of Little Rock, which encompasses the entire state of Arkansas.
Bishop Pohlmeier was ordained as the Diocese of St. Augustine's 11th bishop on Friday, July 22, 2022, at a 2 p.m. ordination Mass, at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Jacksonville.
Raised in Paris, Ark., Father Pohlmeier was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Little Rock on July 25, 1998. His last assignment was pastor of the largest parish in Little Rock, Christ the King, and director of the Faith Formation and Deacon Formation offices. He has been the theological consultant for the Arkansas Catholic newspaper for 19 years and director of continuing education of clergy since 2019.
Bishop Pohlmeier succeeds Bishop Felipe J. Estévez, who has served the St. Augustine Diocese for the past 11 years and is retiring at the age of 76. Bishop Estévez submitted his letter of resignation in February 2021, his 75th birthday, the mandatory age for bishops to retire. He has served the diocese for 11 wonderful years and the good news is he will continue living and ministering in the diocese as needed. One of seven Catholic dioceses in Florida, the Mother Diocese of Florida has a registered Catholic population of more than 153,000 in 17 counties in northeast and north central Florida. This compares to the approximately 154,000 Catholics in Arkansas’ 75 counties.
Reflecting on his appointment to the Diocese of St. Augustine, Bishop Pohlmeier said, “I am grateful for every way I have been called to serve the Church and am humbled by this opportunity to serve in the place where Mass was first celebrated in the United States. May God be praised for any good work I am able to do.”
Join us in welcoming Bishop Pohlmeier!