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Pope Francis relieves Bishop Joseph Strickland from the Diocese of Tyler, Texas

The Texan bishop is one of the most critical voices of the pope within the Church.

Montaje con imágenes del papa Francisco y el obispo de Tyler Joseph Strickland.

(Cordon Press/Wikimedia Commons

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This Saturday, the Vatican reported that Pope Francis removed Bishop Joseph Strickland from the "pastoral governance" of the diocese of Tyler, Texas. Strickland has been a vocal critic of the Supreme Pontiff's reforms, especially regarding his openness to the LGBT movement.

Cardinal Daniel Nicholas DiNardo told Vatican News that the removal came after the pope sent two bishops, Gerald Kicanas and Dennis Sullivan, to conduct "an exhaustive inquired into all aspects of the governance and leadership of the Diocese of Tyler. As a result of the Visitation, the recommendation was made to the Holy Father that the continuation in office of Bishop Strickland was not feasible."

The now-former bishop of Tyler was asked to resign on Thursday. Three days later, the pope relieved him and appointed Bishop Joe Vásquez as apostolic administrator.

"Our work as a Catholic Church in Northeast Texas continues," read a statement from the Diocese of Tyler announcing the change ordered from Rome. "During this time of transition, we pray that God may continue to abundantly bless and strengthen the Church and God's holy, faithful people here and around the world."