The faithful of the Diocese of New Ulm will have the opportunity to say goodbye and express thanks today (Oct. 11) to their shepherd of 12 years who recently retired, Bishop John M. LeVoir.

Due to the COVID-19 social distancing restrictions, the diocese will host a drive-by farewell from 1-2 p.m. at the north entryway parking lot of the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in New Ulm.

Prior to the farewell event, Bishop LeVoir will celebrate the 10 a.m. Mass at the Cathedral which will be livestreamed on the diocesan Web site at www.dnu.org/.

On Aug. 6, 2020, the Diocese of New Ulm announced Pope Francis had accepted Bishop LeVoir’s request for early retirement due to health concerns.

Bishop LeVoir, 74, was appointed bishop of the Diocese of New Ulm July 14, 2008.

A typical retirement age for a bishop is 75.

There is no timeline for the appointment of a new bishop.

However, the search for a replacement began immediately, a process run primarily by the Vatican. During the interim, Monsignor Douglas L. Grams is serving as diocesan administrator.

As administrator, Monsignor Grams assumes the administrative responsibilities of a diocesan bishop until the pope appoints a new bishop.