Following the death of the Rt Rev Kevin Dunn, Bishop of Hexham & Newcastle, at about 9.30pm on Saturday night, Archbishop Vincent Nichols wrote the following tribute yesterday, writes Peter Jennings. The Archbishop said: "As a priest he made an exceptional contribution to the life of the Archdiocese of Birmingham, serving both as an Episcopal Vicar for Religious and also as Episcopal Vicar for Kidderminster, Walsall, Wolverhampton and the Black Country. "His brief period as Bishop of Hexham & Newcastle promised so much for the future." The Archbishop of Birmingham added: "The priests, religious and people of this diocese, saddened at his death, will keep him and his family very much in their thoughts and in their prayers at this time." Kevin Dunn was born in Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire, in the Archdiocese of Birmingham, on 9 July 1950. He went to St Mary's Primary School then to St Patrick's Secondary School. He studied A Levels at Coton College in North Staffordshire. He studied for the priesthood at St Mary's College, Oscott, the diocesan seminary for the Archdiocese of Birmingham. He was ordained as priest at Our Lady and St Werburgh's Church in Clayton, Newcastle-under-Lyme on 17 January 1976. He served at St Patrick's, Walsall, and was chaplain to Stuart Bathurst High School. He served as chaplain to the West Indian community in the Archdiocese of Birmingham from 1980 to 1988. He served as parish priest at Our Lady of the Angels and St Peter in Chains, Stoke-on-Trent from 1988 to 1989. He was also chaplain to the Royal Infirmary, and to Staffordshire University. He underwent further studies at the Pontifical University of St Thomas Aquinas (The Angelicum) in Rome and was awarded a doctorate in Canon Law in 1992. On his return to England he served as parish priest of St Austin's, Stafford, and also lectured in Canon Law at Oscott College. In 1999 he became a Canon of the Metropolitan Chapter of St Chad's Cathedral in Birmingham. Archbishop Maurice Couve de Murville appointed Canon Dunn as Episcopal Vicar for Religious in the Archdiocese of Birmingham in 1993. Archbishop Nichols appointed him as Episcopal Vicar for Kidderminster, Walsall, Wolverhampton and the Black Country in 2001. Pope John Paul II appointed Canon Kevin Dunn as the 12th Bishop of Hexham & Newcastle on 26 March 2004, to succeed Bishop Ambrose Griffiths OSB. His Episcopal Ordination took place in St Mary's Cathedral, Newcastle, on 25 May that year.
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