BISHOP Denis Nulty this week announced a number of diocesan changes in Kildare and Leighlin, which will come into effect on Sunday 7 July.
The changes follow the retirement of a number of priests across the diocese and the untimely death of Fr John Cummins earlier this year.
“There are a number of priests retiring this year and I want to express my deep appreciation and thanks to them that while in retirement they are still willing to assist the life of the diocese in any way they can,” stated Bishop Nulty.
Among those retiring are Fr Jim McCormack in Hacketstown, who will become PE CC in Hacketstown, and Fr Gerry Byrne in Graignamanagh, who will now reside in Leighlinbridge.
Fr Mark Townsend, PP, Daingean is to become PP in Graignamanagh, while Fr Terence McGovern, CC, Hacketstown is to become PP Hacketstown.
Fr Declan Thompson, SPS CC, Bagenalstown is to become PP in Daingean, while Fr Petru Medves, archdiocese of Bucharest, Romania will become CC Bagenalstown.
Carlow native Fr Paddy Byrne, CC, Portlaoise is to become PP Abbeyleix and PP Raheen, while Fr Ger Ahern, PP, Baltinglass is to become director of faith development services. Fr Pat Hennessy, PP, Leighlin, is to become director of ACCORD Carlow, while Fr Liam Morgan, PP, Naas, Two-Mile-House and Sallins, has been appointed vicar for parish renewal and development.
“Appointments are no longer simply filling gaps or spaces, but speaking into a wider vision and plan,” stated Bishop Nulty.
“To all who are stepping into leadership positions in the diocese, once again many thanks and be assured of my full support and that of the people you will work with,” he added.
“I wish all the priests every blessing in their appointments this year and thank them for engaging so positively with the process. As always, I encourage every parish to put prayer for vocations at the heart of their Sunday liturgy. I thank the lay faithful of our diocese, who are so welcoming, encouraging and affirming of our priests,” said Bishop Nulty.
“No-one likes change, so I ask you to encourage and pray for those involved in this year’s changes over the coming weeks.”