New bishop for Lancaster

 The Catholic Media Office has just sent us this news Pope John Paul II has appointed Bishop Patrick O'Donoghue to be new Bishop of Lancaster. Bishop O'Donoghue has been Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster since 1993. He succeeds Bishop John Brewer who died in June 2000. Bishop O'Donoghue said: "My appointment as Bishop of the Diocese of Lancaster comes as a big surprise: in my wildest dreams I had not really expected this appointment. Of course, it's a huge joy and honour to be chosen by the Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, to serve the Church in Lancaster. The North West is a beautiful part of the country, and I've been there many times as a tourist and hiker. Now I come as a pilgrim and one who desires only one thing, and that is to learn and to serve. I know something of the traditional faith of the people: it will be my privilege to share in this and to confirm it. It will be difficult leaving Westminster, where I have spent forty years as student, priest and bishop. I will carry with me great memories of the City and Diocese, but most of all the friendships that were mine in this multi-cultural society. My motto as Bishop of Lancaster will be 'Beati pauperes' ('Blessed are the poor'), a quote from Luke's Gospel (6.20). I humbly ask your prayers." Bishop O'Donoghue's installation as Bishop of Lancaster will take place at St Peter's Cathedral, Lancaster, on Wednesday 4 July at 12noon. Patrick O'Donoghue was born in Mourne Abbey, County Cork, Ireland, on 4 May 1934, and was one of five children of farmers Daniel and Sheila O'Donoghue. He was educated at Patrician Academy in Mallow, Cork. He came to Britain in 1959 for seminary training, first at Campion House, Osterley, Middlesex, and from 1961 to 1967 at Allen Hall seminary when it was at St Edmund's College, Ware, Hertfordshire. He was ordained priest for the Westminster Diocese on 25 May 1967. Fr O'Donoghue first worked in the parish of Our Lady of Willesden from 1967 to 1970. He was on the Diocesan Pastoral Mission team from 1970 to 1973 where he gained experience in 27 parishes in the diocese. From 1973 to 1977 he was pastoral director at Allen Hall seminary. From 1977 to 1978 he was with the team ministry of St Thomas of Canterbury, Fulham. He was sub-administrator of Westminster Cathedral from 1978 to 1985, rector of Allen Hall seminary from 1985 to 1990, and then administrator of the Cathedral from 1990 to 1993. He was also chair of the archdiocese's senate of priests. On 29 June 1993, he was ordained as an auxiliary bishop of Westminster by Cardinal Basil Hume and appointed to the West London pastoral area. Bishop O'Donoghue has been Chairman of the Office for Refugee Policy of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales since 1993, and Chairman of the Westminster Diocesan Pastoral Board since 1996. He was appointed a member of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue in 2001. Bishop O'Donoghue has a special interest in contemporary religious art, particularly in its value as an aid to prayer and as part of the liturgy. In the run up to the 2001 General Election, he published a booklet of his reflections on asylum seekers, entitled 'Any Room at the Inn?'.

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