Bishop Pedro M. Torio Jr., currently serving as bishop of the Baguio area, was re-elected as a United Methodist bishop by delegates at the Philippines Central Conference on Dec. 1.
Torio, the first bishop elected at the quadrennial meeting in Angeles City, received 320 of the 470 votes cast on the sixth ballot. The conference must elect two more bishops when voting continues on Dec. 2.
After his re-election, Torio spoke about the honor of being chosen bishop.
"It is an extremely humbling experience for me to have been elected first on the sixth ballot,” he said. “I can never really thank God and praise God enough for this gift, but at the same time the episcopacy is not only a gift to me, but makes me a gift to the church. That's a tall order, and I want to be a worthy gift to the church.”
Torio was first elected bishop at the 2012 Philippines Central Conference. Bishops in the Philippines face re-election every four years.
Assignments for the 2017-2020 quadrennium will be made after all three Filipino bishops are elected.
Torio’s passion for evangelism and church planting led to the creating of 28 new local churches in the Baguio Area during the 2013-2016 quadrennium.
He currently represents the Philippines Central Conference in the Commission on Central Conference Theological Scholarship and Continuing Education Financial Assistance Funds for the Baguio Episcopal Area. He is also the bishop assigned to the Philippines Central Conference Division of Ordained Ministry, Council on Finance and Administration, and the University Senate.
He currently leads the University Senate in developing the first accreditation standards for United Methodist theological education institutions.
During the 2016 General Conference, he was voted director of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries for 2017-2020.
Torio has a rich background in education, having served as dean at both World Citi College and Aldersgate Divinity School and vice president for Academic Affairs at the University of Eastern Pangasinan. He has been a visiting professor at Wesley Divinity School and John Wesley College Divinity School. He has served as president of the United Methodist Youth Fellowship in the Philippines at the district, conference and national level, and ministering to young people is still a high priority for him today.
He is a graduate of Centro Escolar University's College of Optometry, holds a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary, a Master of Theology from Duke Divinity School and a Doctor of Ministry from Wesley Divinity School. He is a licensed optometrist.
He championed the inclusion of deaconesses in the Philippines Central Conference pension program and developed the concept of a consortium to support the five colleges in the Baguio Episcopal Area.
Torio and his wife, Joyce, have four children.
Mangiduyos is a correspondent for United Methodist News Service.
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