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Thursday, September 29, 2016
Further information on new Bishop of Northampton
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 Monsignor Canon Peter John Haworth Doyle was born on 3 May 1944 at Wilpshire, near Blackburn in Lancashire. The eldest son of John and Alice Doyle, he has two brothers, Christopher and John, and one sister, Alison. His mother died in 1976. His father remarried in 1978 and he and Peter's stepmother, Catherine, now live in Southsea. The family moved to Essex in 1951, and their son Peter was educated by the Jesuits at St. Ignatius Prep School, Buckhurst Hill and at St Ignatius College, Stamford Hill. Having won a scholarship to Sandhurst he was due to go there after his "A" levels and then onto the Royal Artillery. However, in his final ear at school, he decided rather hesitatingly to offer himself for the priesthood. By then the family had moved to Hampshire where his father had been appointed to his fourth headship at the new All Hallows School in Famham. Monsignor Doyle decided to approach the Diocese of Portsmouth. Archbishop John Henry King accepted him as a student for the priesthood, and he was sent to Allen Hall then at Ware in Hertfordshire. Mgr Doyle was ordained priest by Bishop Derek Worlock in St John's Cathedral, Portsmouth on 8 June 1968. At that time Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor was secretary to Bishop Worlock. Since then Mgr Doyle has always worked in parishes in the Diocese of Portsmouth firstly with the late Bishop Derek Worlock, then with the late Bishop Anthony Emery and now with Bishop Crispian Hollis - assistant priest at St Joseph's, Copnor 1968-70, assistant priest at St Edward's, Windsor 1970-75, administrator at St John's Cathedral, Portsmouth 1975-87, parish priest at St Joseph's, Maidenhead 1987-91, and parish priest at St Peter's, Winchester 1991-2005 and also at St Gregory's, Alresford since 2004. Till now he has been a member of the Council of Priests, a Consultor and a member of the Cathedral Chapter and since 2001 a member of the Bishop's Council and a Vicar General. In the past he has been Dean of Portsmouth and of Winchester, has chaired various school Governing bodies, and was Chairman of the Diocesan Schools Commission and the Diocesan Religious Education Council. In the autumn of 2003 he was the Diocesan Administrator while Bishop Crispian Hollis was on sabbatical. In Winchester Mgr Doyle had been looking forward to the challenge of being the one resident priest there and to the developments flowing from the Diocesan Pastoral Assembly taking place in July. Over the years there has been a commitment to justice and peace with the Parish Covenant with the Poor. There are good relationships with Winchester Cathedral and with the other Christian communities in the City. Last week Monsignor Doyle took on the role of chairman of Churches Together in Winchester. He had also just completed a year as chaplain to the City's Catholic mayor, and is currently chaplain to the High Sheriff of Hampshire. Since 1994 he has enjoyed the privilege of being a member of the Old Brotherhood of the English Secular Clergy from which he has to resign on his appointment as Bishop. To relax, Mgr plays golf badly with his fellow clergy. He always comes last in the Clergy Golf competitions! He played squash until recently and he goes skiing once a year usually to Wengen. He enjoys an annual summer holiday with two priests who were his assistants at St John's Cathedral, Bishop Declan Lang and Fr Vincent Harvey. In earlier days he played rugby for Windsor and Portsmouth as a prop forward. He now enjoys watching rugby and is looking forward to the Lions tour to New Zealand. Most importantly, Mgr Doyle is looking forward to coming to the Diocese of Northampton and to getting to know the priests and people so that, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, he can play his full part as Bishop in the life and mission of the local Church there. Notes on the Diocese of Northampton The Diocese of Northampton was established by Pope Pius IX in 1850. and belongs to the Province of Westminster, together with the dioceses of Brentwood, East Anglia and Nottingham. However the Archbishop of Westminster does not have authority over the other dioceses in his province. The new Bishop is the 12th Bishop of Northampton. The Cathedral of the diocese is the Cathedral of Our Lady and St Thomas on Kingsthorpe Road in Northampton. Area served: Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Northamptonshire, and that part of Berkshire (formerly in Buckinghamshire) that lies north of the river Thames. Biggest towns: Northampton, Milton Keynes, Luton, Slough Other towns: Aylesbury, Bedford, Corby, Daventry, High Wycombe, Kettering, Wellingborough Statistics for the Diocese Estimated Catholic Population: 171,130 Average Church Attendance: 31,394 Parishes: 75 Diocesan Priests (active): 83 Priests belonging to Religious Orders: 21 Permanent Deacons (active): 27 Convents: 33 Catholic Secondary Schools: 12 Catholic Primary Schools: 44
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