New Bishop for Westminster

Bishop-elect John Sherrington

Bishop-elect John Sherrington

Pope Benedict XVI today has appointed Father John Sherrington as Auxiliary Bishop for the Diocese of Westminster.

The Episcopal Ordination of Bishop-elect Fr Sherrington will take place on Wednesday 14 September at Westminster Cathedral.

Fr Sherrington, 53, was ordained a priest for the Nottingham Diocese in 1987 and has been parish priest for the Good Shepherd Parish in Nottingham for the past two years. In addition to various diocesan curial responsibilities, Fr Sherrington has also assisted the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales on ethical issues and was a part of the working party for the Bishops' Conference document 'Cherishing Life' (2005).

After a degree in Mathematics from Cambridge University and two years working for Arthur Andersen Management Consultants London, Fr Sherrington was accepted by Bishop McGuinness for the Nottingham Diocese and joined seminary at All Hallows in Dublin. He later gained an STL in Moral Theology from the Gregorian University in Rome and lectured in moral theology at All Hallows in Dublin and then at St John's Seminary in Wonersh, Guildford.

Fr Sherrington said: "I feel very humble at being appointed Auxiliary Bishop for the Diocese of Westminster. I feel an excitement about the opportunity and a fear of what is expected. I know that I will need to rely on God's grace more deeply than ever before and to cultivate my life of prayer. I will use my gifts to the full and to the best of my ability."

"I hope that I can help people to know more deeply that they are loved by God, who calls them in their hearts to serve others. I would like to communicate the hope of the Gospel to those in distress and need."

"I look forward to working in the Diocese of Westminster. I will miss Bishop Malcolm and the priests of Nottingham as well as my parish, and the people who have cared for me, loved me and supported me in my priestly ministry. I look forward to working with Archbishop Vincent, his auxiliaries, Bishops Alan and John, the priests and people in the Diocese."

The Most Reverend Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, said: "I am very grateful to the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, for appointing Fr John Sherrington as Auxiliary Bishop to this Diocese of Westminster. Bishop-elect Sherrington is a priest of wide experience, fine abilities and a generous, graceful nature. I welcome him most warmly as will every member of this Diocese. He will also be a much-valued member of the Bishops' Conference. I thank the Diocese of Nottingham and I am sure that its people and priests will continue to support him with their prayers."

During the press conference Archbishop Nichols said he would be now asking Pope Benedict  to begin the process of seeking a second auxiliary bishop for Westminster.

Biographical Notes

John Francis Sherrington was born in 1958 Leicester, within the Diocese of Nottingham. He has a brother Michael,  married to Sarah. His parents Frank and Catherine  are both deceased.

He attended St Thomas More Catholic Primary School and  Wyggeston Boys' Grammar Schoolin  Leicester.

From 1997-1980 he studied Mathematics at Queens College, Cambridge, gaining a BA.

In 1980 he made a pilgrimage to Lourdes with ACROSS and the Jumbulance. Fr John said this trip, and subsequent pilgrimages to Lourdes  were important in his decision to apply for the priesthood.

From 1980-1982 John Sherrington worked for Arthur Andersen Management Consultants in London. He was accepted by Bishop McGuinness for Nottingham Diocese. From 1982-1987 he studied at All Hallows College in Dublin. He was ordained on 13 June 1987 for the Diocese of Nottingham.

He served as Assistant Priest  from 1987-1988 in Ratcliffe on Trent near Nottingham. During this time he also first served as chaplain in a large mental health care hospital and a youth offender Institute.

From 1988-1990 he gained an STL in Moral Theology at the Gregorian University in Rome.

From 1990-1998 he was Lecturer in Moral Theology and Formation Work All Hallows College, Dublin.

This also provided the opportunity for summer pastoral work in Los Angeles (three times) and twice summer teaching at a Vincentian Seminary in Quezon City Philippines.

From  1998-2004 he was Lecturer in Moral Theology at St John's Seminary, Wonersh, Guildford UK and for some time Director of Studies there.

In 2005 he was a Member of the Bishops' Conference Working Party writing Cherishing Life. From 2004-2009 he was Parish Priest atOur Lady of Lourdes, Derby, and part of the chaplaincy team for the Mental Health Trust and Acute Trust; Member of the Bishop's Council and Episcopal Vicar for Derbyshire; Chair of the Diocesan Board of Commissions; Chair of the Marriage and Family Life Commission of the Diocese and  Member of the British Catholic-Methodist Committee.

In 2004 he was appointed to the British Order of Malta Bioethics Committee and became a Member of the Bishops' Conference Healthcare Reference Group. In 2009 he became Parish Priest at the Good Shepherd Parish in Nottingham. Since 2004 he has also been a member of various hospital ethics committees, Boards of School Governors, and the University of Derby Research Ethics Committee.

Fr John said he enjoys walking in the countryside, and is hoping to explore areas around London once he moves here.

Source: CCN/ICN

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