Pope Francis has appointed Father Aphonsus Cullinan as Bishop of Waterford and Lismore. I warmly welcome this announcement. A former schoolteacher, since he became a priest, Father Cullinan has gained a wide range of pastoral experience in parishes and schools, third-level chaplaincy and hospital pastoral ministry. He has shown good pastoral initiative, mindful of the need to dedicate time especially to young people. In recent years, he has come to know and generously serve members of the Travelling Community.
Father Cullinan will bring many fine qualities with him into his new ministry. As well as pastoral wisdom, he has pursued studies to doctorate level in moral theology. Caring, prayerful and courteous, Father Cullinan has also worked to promote priestly fraternity.
Father Cullinan’s contribution to the Diocese of Limerick will be missed. He is currently chair of the Priests Council and a member of the Cathedral Chapter. I am sure, however, he will take up his new mission as Bishop of Waterford & Lismore with enthusiasm, dedication and prayer. Together with the priests of the Diocese of Limerick and those who have benefitted from his ministry, on this Feast day of the Presentation of Our Lord, a special day in the Year of Consecrated Life proclaimed by Pope Francis, I wish Father Cullinan every blessing in the years to come and assure him of our prayerful support.
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