MANILA-- The Military Ordinariate of the Philippines Bishop Leopoldo Tumulak passed away on Saturday afternoon at the age of 72.
In an article posted on the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) news website, the Catholic prelate died at around 1:26 p.mat the Cardinal Santos Hospital in San Juan City where he was rushed Friday night.
Tumulak, who had led the diocese since 2005, was in and out of the hospital. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer early this year.
As military ordinary, he served as ecclesiastical pastor of the jurisdiction serving all military and police personnel, their dependents and civilian employees.
The Catholic bishop was also the chairman of the CBCP-Episcopal Commission on Prison Pastoral Care (ECPPC).
A native of Santander town in Cebu province, Tumulak was ordained priest in March 1971.
In January 1987, he was appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Cebu which he served for five years. In 1992, Tumulak was named the bishop of Tagbilaran.
The Military Ordinariate has at least 130 priests, 126 of whom are diocesan clergy, while four are religious.
On the other hand, CBCP-ECPPC Executive Secretary Rodolfo Diamante expressed sadness over the passing away of their leader.
"It is a sad day for the jail and prison ministry because we lost not only a chair in our commission but one who truly is a father to us all. Bp. Leo has reflected the image of a compassionate God who really cares about his people," he said.
Diamante added, "Up to his last minute he wanted to spend hid remaining days with his flock and spent quality time with them. His life of service will be etched in our hearts. We will never forget him."
Source: Philippines News Agency