Rear Adm. John J. O'Connor, the chief of U.S. Navy Chaplains, has been named a bishop by Pope John Paul II.

O'Connor, 59, has spent 27 years in the Navy and was to retire from the service to his home diocese of Philadelphia on June 1. Instead, he will move to New York to serve under Cardinal Terrence Cooke as an auxiliary bishop in the military ordinariate-the diocese of all Catholics in the armed services, the Veterans Administration, and on the staffs of U.S. government offices abroad.

He was ordained in 1945 and has been a monsignor since 1966. As chief of Navy chaplains for the past four years, he was responsible for chaplains of all denominations serving with the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.He will be succeeded by a Lutheran clergyman Rear Adm. Ross Trower.

O'Connor also had taught at the U.S. Naval Academy and was awarded his third Legion of Merit in recognition of a program he developed there called "The Professional Officer and the Human Person." He is the author of two books, "A Chaplain Looks at Vietnam," and "Principles and Problems of Naval Leadership."

He will be ordained a bishop by the pope in a May 27 ceremony at the Vatican. CAPTION: Picture, REAR ADM. JOHN J. O'CONNOR, U.S. Navy Photo