A 'generous heartfelt welcome' for new Bishop of Cork

As the second eldest in a family of seven the new Bishop of Cork and Ross, Most Rev Fintan Gavin, is well versed in team work so it was a natural fit for him to heavily feature the Church of Ireland Bishop the Right Rev Dr John Colton and Bishop Emeritus Most Reverend John Buckley in his ordination ceremony.

A 'generous heartfelt welcome' for new Bishop of Cork

As the second eldest in a family of seven the new Bishop of Cork and Ross, Most Rev Fintan Gavin, is well versed in team work so it was a natural fit for him to heavily feature the Church of Ireland Bishop the Right Rev Dr Paul Colton and Bishop Emeritus Most Reverend John Buckley in his ordination ceremony.

At a ceremony in the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne Bishop Colton brought forward the crozier of the Bishop.

Bishop Gavin elected to be ordained the new Bishop of Cork and Ross by his predecessor, Most Reverend John Buckley, who also guided him to the vacant Bishop's chair.

In a personal touch the new Bishop used the late Bishop Michael Murphy's pastoral staff.

Earlier up to 200 priests from around the country made a solemn procession from two nearby schools to the Cathedral.

The newly ordained Bishop, who is a native of Westland Row in Dublin, no doubt would have permitted himself a wry smile at the fact that the Dublin priests came from St Vincent's school while their Cork peers were in Farranferris with a unification occurring on the hill.

As the first non-Cork born Bishop in the diocese in more than 300 years Bishop Gavin got a crash course in all things Leeside as the procession of concelebrating priests made their way in to the cathedral to the sound of the Butter Exchange Brass band.

Bishop Emeritus Most Rev John Buckley told Bishop Gavin that Cork's bishops are noted for their longevity with only four Bishops having served in the diocese since 1916.

The 79-year-old Bishop said his successor was fitting in well in the diocese.

"They say that the Dublin football team does not play well outside of Dublin, but this does not apply to Msgr Fintan.

"He is a man of wide and varied administrative and pastoral experience and I know too that he has the prayerful support of everyone in Cork."

Meanwhile, in his address the newly ordained Bishop of Cork and Ross, Most Reverend Fintan Gavin, said that we need to actively go out of our way to "encourage, foster, nourish and promote vocations to the priesthood."

He thanked priests from all over the country and beyond for travelling to the ordination.

He took a moment to pay tribute to Canon Kieran Twomey, parish priest of Blackrock in Cork who died last Thursday.

Fr Gavin is one of two priests in his own family and was joined at the celebrations by his parents Angela and Michael Gavin and his six siblings one of whom Morgan is a priest.

In his address, Bishop Gavin said how fortunate he was to have his family at the ordination.

I am grateful to them for all they gave to my brothers, sisters and myself through their selfless generosity and love and through their own example, sharing the gifts of faith and love.

Members of his family brought forward his ring, zuchetto and mitre during the ceremony. Attendees at the ordination included his 16 nieces and nephews.

Bishop Gavin also thanked the people of Cork for their "generous heartfelt welcome" and offers of support since he was announced as the successor to Bishop Buckley.

He expressed a particular thanks to a youngster called Joseph who was preparing for his confirmation but took the time to pen a note offering him good wishes.

1200 people gathered at the Cathedral for the ordination with each parish in the diocese receiving seven invitations.

Live streaming was also made available and several hundred people watched the ceremony remotely on a screen in the cathedral in Skibbereen.

Music was provided by the Cathedral Choir in addition to the Our Lady of Victory choir from in Ballymun in Dublin where Bishop Gavin served as musical director.

Musical contributions were also made by Ballincollig Junior Choir and Mayfield Community School.

The homily at the ordination was delivered by Fr Robert Young, Parish priest of Kinsale, who said that when he got the call from Bishop Gavin about having a role on the day he reacted in shock by saying "Oh Jesus, Mary and St Joseph."

Fr Young said that he was horrified to realise that his first conversation with the new Bishop had him "taking the Lord's name in vain."

Fr Young said that it was a historic day for the diocese.

"What is happening today has happened only eight times in the last 200 years. Today we thank God for the Ministry of Bishop John Buckley.

Bishop John, you have served faithfully as Bishop for 35 years. It has been a difficult and challenging time. We wish you well as you enter a new phase of life.

I warmly welcome Bishop elect Fintan Gavin. The priests and people of the diocese are delighted that you accepted the call to be our Bishop."

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin and Archbishop Kieran O'Reilly were the co-consecrators at the ordination

Ecumenical representatives included Bishop Colton, Reverend Denis Maguire, Methodist Church and the Members of Cork Ecumenical Standing Committee.

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