Below are some of the words of welcome from Archbishops and Clergy on the appointment of Bishop-elect Paul Connell as Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois.
Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland
Bishop-elect Paul’s appointment will be a loss for the priests and people of his home diocese of Meath, as well as for his colleagues working in the secretariat of the Bishops’ Conference in Columba Centre, Maynooth. However his pastoral gifts, spiritual leadership and Episcopal calling today, especially at this time of renewal for the Church in Ireland, will greatly assist the Church in Ireland as we continue to walk the Synodal journey at local and national level over the next five years.
Archbishop Francis Duffy of Tuam
Father Paul brings to his new position a wealth of experience in Catholic education at both local and national levels. His role, until now, as Chancellor in the Diocese of Meath, together with his work as Principal of a large diocesan secondary school, and his pastoral experience, has already equipped him for the responsibilities involved in leading a diocese.
I extend my good wishes to Father Tom Healy who carried out his responsibilities as Diocesan Administrator with considerable care and diligence for the last fifteen months, and I congratulate him on a job well done.
Father Tom Healy, Diocesan Administrator of Ardagh and Clonmacnois
It is fifteen months since we said farewell to Archbishop Francis Duffy on his transfer to the Archdiocese of Tuam – so we are very pleased that Pope Francis has appointed a new shepherd to lead us at this time.
Father Paul hails from the neighbouring Diocese of Meath, and has family roots in our diocese, so I feel that we are welcoming a near neighbour and hope that his transition to Ardagh and Clonmacnois will be a smooth and happy experience for him.
Saint Mel and Saint Ciaran, pray for us.