20th November 2007
Statement by Bishop-elect Brendan Kelly of the Diocese of Achonry on his appointment as Bishop
At a press conference in the Presbytery, Ballaghaderreen earlier today, Bishop Thomas Flynn welcomed Monsignor Brendan Kelly, Bishop-Elect of the Diocese of Achonry, to the diocese. Bishop Flynn spoke of Bishop-elect Kelly’s commitment to ministry and the fine work he has done in both education and parish ministry. Bishop Flynn wished him well in the diocese and assured him of a sincere and lasting welcome.
Bishop-elect Kelly thanked Bishop Flynn for his words and the press for attending. He said that he was happy to be in the diocese and, even at this early stage, felt welcomed by the people and priests he had met. He said he looked forward to working in the diocese and would concentrate his initial efforts on getting to know the priests with whom he will work and the people of the diocese. “My future is among them”, he said. He believes much of his immediate future will involve listening and learning and commented that it is strange to be back in a learning situation again.
Surprised by his appointment, Bishop-elect Kelly said he was happy to accept it and has always tried in ministry to go where he is sent. “Change, though difficult can be relished”, continued Bishop-elect Kelly “and I welcome new beginnings. I feel I need a lot of help and support and have a strong sense that I will receive these here in Achonry”.
“I have always sought to preach the Gospel and am convinced that the Lord works best with vessels of clay. I hope and pray I can live in response to this call. As a priest, I have prayed at Mass every day for the bishop and now understand a bit more perhaps, why!”
Bishop-elect Kelly said that as a young man he wanted to become a priest to work with people rather than things and that remains his focus and intent. “I look forward to working with the priests and people of the diocese and ask them to pray for me and work with me”
Mentioning his own diocese, he thanked his bishop and fellow priests for their friendship and support through the years. He always found great support among them and is sure of their continued friendship. He spoke of Spiddal and his fondness for the parish and its people. He enjoyed being there as he had enjoyed all his appointments in the diocese.
Martin Long Director of Communications (086 172 7678)
Kathy Tynan Communications Officer (086 817 5674)