Today, December 8, 2020, at noon, the Holy See officially declared that Pope Francis has appointed our confrere, Friar Martin KMETEC, as the Metropolitan Archbishop of Smyrna (Izmir) in Turkey.

Friar Martin was born on November 10, 1956, in Ptuj, Slovenia. In 1971, having completed primary school, he entered the minor seminary of the Friars Minor Conventual in Zagreb, Croatia, where he finished his first year. For the next three years he attended middle school in his hometown. In 1976, he entered the novitiate after completing his final exams and his period of military service. On September 25, 1977, he professed his simple vows and began theology studies that year in Ljubljana, Slovenia. In 1982, he concluded his studies there and on October 04 of that year, he professed his solemn vows in Ptuj. He then went on to the United States to complete his theology studies. On February 23, 1983, he was ordained to the diaconate in Rensselaer, New York, USA. On June 29, 1983, he was ordained to the priesthood in Ptujska Gora, Slovenia. He next served as a formator at the Conventual Franciscan minor seminary in Ljubljana until 1989.
In the autumn of that year he left for Paris, where he prepared to go on mission to Lebanon. At the end of 1990, he moved to the St. Antoine de Padoue Friary in Sin el Fil- Beirut, Lebanon, and worked in the parish. In September of 2001, he left for Ismir [Smyrna], Turkey, to serve as the Guardian of the St. Helen Friary.
During 2006-07, he was a member of the community in Iskenderun, Turkey. He later returned to Ismir, where he served until 2009. He served again briefly in Iskenderun, then in 2011, was appointed the Press Office Director for the Provincial Custody of the Orient and the Holy Land and moved to Büyükdere-Istanbul, Turkey, where he has remained to this day as a member of the Nativity of the B.V.M. Friary
We assure our confrere of our prayers and our sincerest best wishes!

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