Vatican City. The Holy Father appointed Auxiliary Bishops of the Archdiocese of Osaka (Japan) today: Rev. Fr. Josep Maria Abella Batlle, C. M.F., parish priest of the Cathedral of the same Metropolitan Seat, assigning him the titular seat of Malamocco; Rev. Paul Toshihiro Sakai, a member of Opus Dei, until now Secretary General of the Prelature of Opus Dei, in Japan, assigning him the titular seat of Novabarbara.
Rev. Fr. Josep Maria Abella Batlle, C.M.F. was born on November 3, 1949 in Lleida, Spain. After completing his studies in Philosophy and Theology at the Faculty of Jesuit Theology in Sant Cugat del Vallès (Barcelona), he was sent to Japan to learn the language. He made his first profession on August 22, 1966 and perpetual profession on December 8, 1972. He was ordained a priest on July 12, 1975.
After his priestly ordination he held the following positions: Coadjutor of the Midorigaoka Parish in the Diocese of Nagoya (1975-1977); Councilor of the Delegation (1976-1981); Uminohoshi asylum director in the Archdiocese of Osaka (1981-1984); Parish priest of the Hirakata Parish in the Archdiocese of Osaka (1981-1988); Director of the scholastic institution (1981-1991); Director of Asylum Akenohoshi in the Diocese of Nagoya (1989-1992); Major Superior of East Asia (1981-1992); Director of the Claretian Committee for Evangelization, in Rome (1991-2003); Superior General of the Missionaries Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (Rome) for two terms (2003-2015); returned to Japan, resided at the Parish of Imaichi, in the Archdiocese of Osaka (2015-2016); since 2016 he is a member of the Shirokita Foraria Vicariate, in the Archdiocese of Osaka; and from 2017 he is parish priest of the Cathedral of the Archdiocese of Osaka.