The new global leader of the Catholic Church’s Dominican Order is a Filipino priest.

Father Gerard Francisco Timoner III, from Daet, Camarines Norte, was recently elected to the position during the General Chapter of the religious order in Biên Hoà, Vietnam.

Fr. Timoner is the first Asian to serve as the master of the Order of Preachers, also known as the Dominican Order.

Prior to his election, Fr. Timoner was an assistant for Asia and the Pacific of the outgoing master, the Frenchman Bruno Caderè, and head of the Filipino Dominicans.

Ordained a priest in 1995, Fr. Timoner, 51 years-old, will serve as head of the Dominican Order for nine years.

Fr. Timoner obtained his philosophy degree from the Philippine Dominican Center of International Studies and his theology from the University of Santo Tomas (UST).

In 2004, Timoner finished his licentiate in sacred theology at the Catholic University of Nijmegen in the Netherlands.

Fr. Timoner also served as vice rector for religious affairs and rector of the UST Central Seminary from 2007 to 2012.

In 2014, Pope Francis appointed him to the International Theological Commission, a 30-member commission tasked to examine questions on doctrinal matters. (Source: Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines)

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