The Consecration of Bishop Vilhelms Lapelis took place in St. Joseph's cathedral, Liepaja, on 25 March 2000, and Vilhelms Lapelis served as a bishop of the diocese of Liepaja from 12 May 2001 to 20 June 2012.
Bishop Vilhelms Lapelis says goodbye to Kurzeme
Dear Liepaja diocesan priests, consecrated persons, lay people and all the faithful people of good will in Kurzeme!
I appeal to you to make known that today on 20 June I received a message that the Holy Father accepted my resignation from the pastoral care of the diocese of Liepaja in accordance with canon 401 para. 2 of the Code of Canon Law which reads: “A diocesan bishop, who because of illness or some other grave reason, has become unsuited for the fulfillment of his office, is earnestly requested to offer his resignation”. I am very grateful to the Holy Father and really pleased, because I accept his decision as the will of God, which He expresses through the person of the Pope. I have always believed that there is nothing better than to find out God's will and to implement it in life.
It will give me satisfaction, if you with respect and love accept the temporary head of Liepaja diocese His Excellency Bishop Edvards Pavlovskis appointed by Pope Benedict XVI, as well as my successor - the new bishop of the diocese of Liepaja, who in the near future will be nominated by the Pope.
I thank everyone for the cooperation and support, which I have generously received from you, and I pray God bless you all.
I will always include each of you and your needs in my prayers, but please remember me in your prayers, so that I can make good use of next phase of my life - that I always faithfully serve God and that I love Him and everyone more and more.
On Saturday, 30 June at 11:00 AM in St. Joseph's cathedral, Liepaja, the adieu and the celebration of the Holy Mass will take place, during which I will give thanks to God for blessing in my ministry and to each of you I have had the good fortune to meet.
May Holy Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ clothe all of us with her mantle!
Emeritus Bishop of the diocese of Liepaja