Friday, 16 March 2012

Wilcannia-Forbes: fastest turnover in the West?

Wilcannia-Forbes Diocese, you may recall, seems to have something of an attraction and retention problem when it comes to bishops, Apostolic Administrators, and priests.

Broken Hill parish

You might recall that in my last update on Wilcannia-Forbes, I mentioned that the able and orthodox priest in charge of Broken Hill Cathedral had decamped in the wake of the lesbian school child scandal, and been replaced by a newly ordained priest from Sydney.

Well seems that he will set some kind of record for the length of his appointment, because he has now been replaced, according to the Catholic Weekly, by yet another newly ordained priest from the Sydney Archdiocese.

This time, however, the appointee has the benefit of considerable experience, as he was a retired former Anglican priest, Fr Victor Pringle, who converted in 2006, and was ordained as a Catholic priest by Cardinal Pell last week.  If only the Ordinariate were up and running, and we had more of these excellent ex-Anglicans to draw on!

Meanwhile on the bigger picture...

In the meantime, we are still waiting to learn the fate of the diocese.

It is hard to tell whether the 'days of reflection' going on around the diocese are intended as input to the process, or just to make people continue to feel engaged.  Here is the ad for the one held in Orange a week ago:


‘21st Century Catholic - Our call’ 9.30am-12noon Bishop Michael McKenna is encouraging us to reflect on how we might provide pastoral and spiritual care for the people of our Diocese in the light of the current realities of fewer and older clergy and an ever increasing Catholic population spread over a wider geographical area. He has challenged us to think about what the church might look like into the future - into this 21st Century.

As part of this response, the Parish Pastoral Council will be holding a reflection day on 10th March in Kenna Hall, at which you can listen to the accumulated wisdom of some key speakers who have been struggling with questions on how we shape the church of the future in country Dioceses.

Guest speakers are Richard McMahon, from the Wollongong Diocese and Sr Margaret Cameron OP, with years of experience in Wilcannia Forbes Diocese."

Hmm.  So are you feeling encouraged that this mess is about to be resolved for the better?

1 comment:

Luke S said...

At the time of Fr Greg Morgan's appointment in Wilcannia-Forbes, the rumour floating around was that he would only be in Broken Hill for 6 weeks. Perhaps the plan was to give Fr Victor Pringle that post after his ordination?

God Bless