Bishop Elect Myron Cotta Ready For New Challenge - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Bishop Elect Myron Cotta Ready For New Challenge

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FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) -

Monsignor Myron Cotta has been a ranking Priest in the Fresno Diocese for the past fifteen years.   Last week he got a call from the Vatican that is career changing as he was asked to become the new Auxiliary Bishop in Sacramento.

Bishop Cotta said the call came early last week from the Papal Office in Washington D.C. "Pope Francis has appointed you as Auxiliary of Sacramento.   Do you accept? Do you decline?  What's your answer in other words?"

His answer wasn't immediate.   He asked to sleep on it and decide by the next day.  His decision was yes! "It's a little intimidating all of this.   You become a little anxious about this.   It improves your prayer life really quick because you're really depending on God to guide you and respond to the call."

Myron Cotta, hails from Dos Palos.  He is the son of dairy farmers.  Cotta didn't hear the call to the priesthood until his mid 20's.  He was ordained at St. Anthony of Padua in Fresno when he was in his early 30's.  "His first church was in Atwater.   Two years later he moved to Laton and then in 1992 he spent his longest stint in Gustine.

In 1999 he moved to the Fresno Diocese and became the late Bishop John Steinbock's right hand man as Vicar General.  "I think he's smiling up there rubbing his hands and saying now you're gonna see what this is like to be a Bishop."

Auxiliary Bishop Cotta's new boss is Bishop Jaime Soto.  The two went to seminary together but didn't know each other.  The Diocese of Sacramento serves more than 900–thousand Catholics.

It covers 42–thousand square miles and sprawls from San Francisco Bay to Sacramento and the Oregon border.  At first Cotta's Mom wasn't too excited with his move?  "She said you've got to be kidding.   She was taken back by it but the first thing as a Mom, you're gonna be further away."

After the initial shock she told him she was excited, honored and proud.  At age sixty it's a new beginning for Myron Cotta.  He's leaving a familiar nest to accept a position that was handpicked by Pope Francis. 

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