Pope Francis, who is currently on an apostolic visit to Iraq, on Saturday appointed Father Fransiskus Tuaman Sinaga as the new bishop of Sibolga, on the west coast of Indonesia's North Sumatra province. Father Sinaga belongs to the clergy of Sibolga, where he is director of the Dian Mandala Diocesan Institute of Pastoral Care on the Island of Nias.
Born on November 22, 1972, in Penggalangan, in the Archdiocese of Medan, Father Sinaga attended the local elementary and middle schools. After completing his studies in the minor seminary he continued his philosophical and theological studies in the inter-diocesan major seminary of Pematangsiantar.
Following his priestly ordination on February 14, 2003, he has pursued his studies and held the following responsibilities:
2003-2005: assistant parish priest in Gunungsitoli, Island of Nias
2005-2007: formator in the Sibolga Minor Seminary (2005-2007)
2007-2009: studied for a licentiate in moral theology at the Pontifical Urban University of Rome
2019-2013: parish priest in Gunungsitoli and vicar forane for the Island of Nias
2015-now: director of the Dian Mandala Diocesan Institute of Pastoral Care on the Island of Nias.
Father Sinaga has also served as president of the Diocesan Priestly Union (UNIO) and the diocesan director of the Pontifical Mission Societies.
Elevated to a diocese on October 24, 1980, Sibolga Diocese is a suffragan of the ecclesiastical province of Medan. The See of Sibolga has been vacant since the death of Bishop Ludovikus Simanullang on September 20, 2018. Archbishop Anicetus Bongsu Antonius Sinaga of Medan served as its apostolic administrator until his death on November 7, 2020. Since then, Father Charles Sihombing has been the administrator of the diocese. Sibolga Diocese has around 199,000 Catholics.