Archbishop Martin congratulates Dublin priest appointed
by Pope Francis
as Bishop of Cork & Ross
The Archbishop of Dublin, Diarmuid Martin has extended warm congratulations to Fr. Fintan Gavin, whom Pope Francis today announced as the next Bishop of Cork and Ross.
Archbishop Martin said that Fr. Gavin, currently Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Dublin, had brought and an enormous contribution to many as a Diocesan priest and as a highly regarded Canon Lawyer, not just in Dublin but also throughout the country.
“Fr. Gavin will be missed in our Diocese where he is known for his experience, knowledge and personal warmth” said Archbishop Martin, “I am personally very pleased that his contribution has been recognised by Pope Francis and that he will have a an opportunity to bring his gifts and wide pastoral experience to the Diocese of Cork and Ross. He will be missed by all of us in Dublin but I know he will minister to the very best of his ability for the people of Cork and the wider Irish Church at the Bishops Conference level.”
Archbishop Martin added that Fr. Gavin had also demonstrated an ability to reach out to young people in the Diocese working with a variety of youth groups and young adults helping them to grow in faith in a variety of innovative ways.
While serving in the inner city parish of Saint Andrews, Westland Row, Dublin, Bishop elect Gavin collaborated in the very successful ‘Second Chance Saturday’, offering an invitation and an encouragement to people who had drifted form the Church to give their faith a second change, reaching out through street ministry and offering social time and hospitality. Has led groups of young people to International World Youth Days in Madrid, Rio de Janeiro and Krakow. Has participated as a chaplain to the Dublin Diocesan Children’s Pilgrimage to Lourdes each year during Easter Week, involving travelling with a group of children with special needs and their helper volunteers to Lourdes, collaborating with leaders who plan, fundraise and train together as helpers in advance in the winter and early spring months.
Recently he worked with the Music Director developing the Gospel Choir in Our Lady of Victories Parish, Ballymun Road, Dublin, who together with a young adult group animate a Mass for Young People in the parish every Sunday evening. The choir was especially chosen to lead the liturgical singing during the meeting of Pope Francis with engaged and newly married couples at Saint Mary’s Pro Cathedral, Dublin, during the World Meeting of Families last August. ENDS
Speaking notes of Bishop-elect Fintan Gavin on his appointment to
the Diocese of Cork & Ross
Cathedral of Saint Mary & Saint Anne, Cork City
A very good morning! It is difficult to express in words, the shock and surprise I felt when the Papal Nuncio Archbishop Okolo told me of Pope Francis’ wish to appoint me as the next Bishop of Cork & Ross.
I was very happily serving the Church as an ordinary priest in the Archdiocese of Dublin during the last 27 years since I was ordained in various different ministries. And as a North Side Dubliner I would never have expected such trust to be placed in me by Pope Francis by asking me to serve as a humble servant leader, the People of God, the Body of Christ of the Diocese of Cork & Ross.
To be honest, it seems very daunting at this stage and I am very aware of my own human limitations but I have always answered God’s call, each day, to serve in ways I would never have planned or expected. Thankfully God has always given me the grace and strength to do this, with the help of God’s people and I am really excited by the challenge.
Journeying towards Cork
Today is about the people of the Diocese of Cork & Ross, one of the largest dioceses in Ireland. I have experienced in Cork people their great sense of community spirit and warm welcome across all the generations of all age groups and places. I look forward to becoming part of your great sense of community and making my home among you. That community spirit is alive in active and faith-filled parishes throughout the diocese as people and priests work together. I look forward to supporting and being enriched by the community spirit here and together in collaborative ministry, getting to know you as I visit and meet and engage with you in the parishes across the diocese.
In recent years I have had two wonderful experiences of priestly ministry here in this diocese. I celebrated, on the occasion of their marriage, the wedding of two friends in the historical setting of Saint Finbarr’s Oratory, Gougane Barra, in the parish of Uibh Laoire, Inchigeela, a place steeped in the history of our Christian faith lived by people over many centuries.
On another occasion I concelebrated Mass here in the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne. I was accompanying, to a very warm welcome here, the Young Adult Gospel Choir from our parish of Our Lady of Victories, Ballymun Road, Dublin. The Gospel Choir led the liturgical music at a Saturday evening vigil Mass while we were here in Cork. The choir was participating in a choral competition as part of the Cork International Choral Festival.
I greet with a heart of love and faith the priests, the permanent deacons, the religious and all the people of the Diocese of Cork and Ross, especially young people and look forward to getting to know each of you as we work together and as I learn from you.
I am conscious of those who have felt let down by the Church and are just ‘hanging in there’. I encourage you not to give up.
Setting out on this new ministry, I have a lot to learn from you the people, religious, deacons and priests of the Diocese of Cork and Ross. I look forward to listening to you and benefiting from your experience, from your wisdom and guidance.
I look forward to working with other Christian Church leaders to build on the work of dialogue and ecumenism already taking place. I look forward in this City, County and beyond as a good neighbour of engaging also with other faith communities and, on this occasion, I greet people of all faiths, traditions and all who serve the common good in every way.
I cannot pretend that leaving my life and ministry in Dublin will be easy.
I want to thank those I have collaborated and worked with in the Holy Cross Dublin Diocesan Centre and the Diocesan Offices and the faith community of the parish of Our Lady of Victories, Ballymun Road where I have served as a priest over the last almost ten years.
I have been blessed always in my family and close personal friends whose love and sacrifices have supported me on my journey as a priest and that support will continue to be very important to me.
I would like take this opportunity to thank Archbishop Jude Okolo, Papal Nuncio to Ireland, for his kindness and advice to me over these weeks and for his presence here this morning and in leading the celebration of morning Mass.
I am very grateful to Cardinal Connell and to Archbishop Diarmuid Martin for the many life giving opportunities I have been trusted with in ministry and service in the Dublin Diocese. I want to thank Archbishop Diarmuid Martin especially for his kindness and practical support during these days.
I would like to thank Bishop John Buckley for his genuine welcome and for all his encouragement and support to me over the last two weeks. I know well that Bishop Buckley is a much loved pastor of the diocese during his time as auxiliary bishop and then bishop over the last thirty-five years. While I wish him every happiness in his well-deserved retirement, I hope that he will be present and active and feel welcome in diocesan occasions and celebrations in the years ahead. I hope to be able to draw on his wisdom and experience.
I wish to express my appreciation to acting diocesan secretary Father Michael Keohane and to the cathedral administrator Father John O’Donovan and to all here in the Cathedral of Saint Mary and Saint Anne for their work in organising this morning’s announcement and for their welcome.
I wish to acknowledge the presence of Archbishop Patrick Coveney Apostolic Nuncio Emeritus to Greece now living in his diocese of origin, Vicars General Monsignor Kevin O’ Callaghan and Monsignor Aidan O’Driscoll and the priests religious and so many people of the diocese, including the pupils and teachers from the local parish schools, gathered here this morning. ENDS
‘A splash of holy water’ as we journey out together
As we move towards Easter we are reminded of how we are all united through our baptism. When I visited it previously, one of the things that struck me about this historic cathedral was the baptismal font which is placed – significantly – at the entrance of this cathedral parish church.
Sometimes, before setting out on a journey, we put our hands in the holy water font maybe at home or we splash those who are about to set out on a journey with some blessed Holy Water.
One of the scripture readings just a few days ago this Lent from the prophet Ezekiel (47:1-9.12) talks about God’s love and our love as a stream of water, bringing life to all wherever it flows, reminding us of the love and light Jesus brings all of us, especially the weak and vulnerable, those on the margins.
As I, in these very first few significant steps, walk among you and prepare to begin my ministry with you, let us pray for one another. As a gesture reminding each of us of our baptismal call from God I would like, as a help on the journey, to ask Bishop Buckley and others gathered at the font from the local community to bless us, as we bless one another and to ‘splash me’ this morning with some local holy water, blessed before we began Lent, as we journey out together.
I ask sincerely for your prayers and blessing as we go forward together, remembering one another in prayer.
From my heart, thank you for the warmth of your welcome here this morning. Thank you!
Pope Francis appoints Father Fintan Gavin as the new Bishop of Cork & Ross
His Holiness Pope Francis has appointed Father Fintan Gavin, Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Dublin, as the new Bishop of Cork & Ross.
Bishop-elect Gavin will concelebrate Mass at 10.15am this morning in the Cathedral of Saint Mary & Saint Anne in Cork City with His Excellency the Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo; Bishop Emeritus of Cork & Ross, Bishop John Buckley and with priests of the diocese. Please see below for a brief overview of the life and ministry of Bishop-elect Fintan Gavin.
- Life and ministry of Bishop-elect Fintan Gavin
Bishop-elect Gavin was born in Dublin on 1 January 1966 and baptised in Saint Andrews Parish, Westland Row, Dublin, on 5 January 1966. He is the second eldest of seven brothers and sisters. His family roots are in Marino, Saint Vincent de Paul Parish, on the Northside of Dublin. His grandparents and ancestors were from Midfield, Co Mayo, Newtown, North Co Dublin, and Lisnaskea, County Fermanagh. He played hurling and football with Saint Vincent’s GAA Club, Marino, and was a member of Marino Athletic Club. Prior to his seminary formation in Clonliffe College, Dublin, Bishop-elect Gavin had begun training as a residential social worker in Our Lady’s Hostel, Eccles Street, Dublin, from September 1983 – August 1984.
Bishop-elect Gavin was ordained to the Diaconate by the former Archbishop of Dublin, Archbishop Desmond Connell, in the Church of the Holy Cross, Clonliffe, Drumcondra, on 11 March 1990. He was ordained to serve as a priest of the Archdiocese by the Bishop Éamonn Walsh, Auxiliary Bishop of Dublin, and was appointed to the Saint Vincent de Paul Parish Church, Marino, Dublin, on 7 June 1991.
Up to today’s appointment to the Diocese of Cork & Ross, Bishop-elect Gavin was Chancellor in the Archdiocese of Dublin and Parish Chaplain in Ballymun Road Parish and the Grouping parishes of Iona Road, Drumcondra, Glasnevin, Ballymun Road and Ballygall, Dublin, and Chaplain to the Italian speaking community in the Archdiocese and chaplain to the annual Dublin Diocesan Children’s Pilgrimage to Lourdes. He is fluent in Italian and Spanish and enjoys keeping fit, walking, cooking – especially vegetarian, and gardening.
Education, Undergraduate, Postgraduate Study
Primary school, Scoil Mhuire, CBS, Boys’ National School, Marino (1973-1978); secondary school, Ardscoil Rís, CBS, Marino (1978- 1983); third level, (1984-1991) seminary formation, Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, Dip Phil, NCCA (1987). During seminary education in the course of a pastoral year, he trained at Liberty Hall, Dublin, the headquarters of the Services, Industrial, Professional, and Technical Union (SIPTU); at the Northlands addiction treatment counselling centre, Derry, and at Saint Patrick’s Hospital, Mental Health Services, James’ Street, Dublin (1987-1988). Bishop-elect Gavin’s summer parish experience was at Brentwood Cathedral Parish of Saint Mary and Saint Helen, Essex, England,(1990). He awarded a Bachelor of Divinity (1991), Holy Cross College, Clonliffe, Dublin [a sub studium of The Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, ANGELICUM]; H Dip in Education, University College Dublin (NUI) (1994); JCL, Licence in canon law, from The Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome (1999), JCD, Doctorate in canon law, specialising in Rotal Jurisprudence from The Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, (2003).
Priestly ministries of service
Bishop-elect Gavin was a priest-teacher at Saint Thomas’ Community College, Bray, Co Wicklow (1991-1994); Chaplain, Saint Gerard’s Junior and Senior School, Bray, Co Wicklow (1991-1994); Parish Chaplain, Holy Redeemer Parish, Bray, Co Wicklow (1991-1994); Priest-teacher, Killinarden Community School, Tallaght, Dublin 24 (1994-1996); Parish Chaplain, Parish of the Sacred Heart, Killinarden, Tallaght (1994-1996). On the nomination of the Archbishop of Dublin, post-graduate doctoral study, Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, residing at the Pontificio Collegio Portoghese, Rome (1996-2002); Vice- Chancellor, Archdiocese of Dublin (2003- 2017), Parish Chaplain, Saint Andrew’s, Westland Row, Dublin (2002-2010); Parish Chaplain, Our Lady of Victories, Ballymun Road, Dublin (2010 -present), Chancellor, Archdiocese of Dublin (2017- present); Chaplain in the Dublin diocese to the Italian speaking community (2015- present); A member of the ‘Embrace’ Team, inter-church marriage preparation in Dublin (2002 – present). Member of Dublin Diocesan Advisory Committee on Incardination of Priests (2010 – present); Member of the Case Management Committee of the National Board for Safeguarding of Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland (2016 – present).
Additional Pastoral Ministries
Inter-academic year pastoral ministry, Saint Frances Cabrini Parish, Coram, Rockville Centre Diocese, Long Island, New York,(summers, 1992-1995); during postgraduate studies at the Gregorian University, Rome, assisting at the Parrochia di S. Maria a Cintoia, Florence, including summer ministry; assisting as summer ministry at the parish of San Jaime y Santa Ana, Benidorm, Alicante, Spain, involving ministry to migrants (1999-2001); during the academic years participated in Rome in the ministry of the Sant’Egidio community – movement of lay people, based on prayer, solidarity, ecumenism, dialogue and a practical love of preference for the poor, working at their mensa (soup kitchen) and celebrating Sunday Mass in their communities throughout Rome; collaborating with the community of the Missionarie di Cristo Risorto, working with university students, involved in spiritual accompaniment, retreats and an outreach apostolate to homeless people in Tiburtina Railway Station, Rome. Through the years, maintaining contact with both the Missionarie di Cristo Risorto and with university students and their ministries, facilitating retreats in recent years and in Italy for similar groups. Served one summer in Argentina, working with an indigenous community in Patagonia and accompanying a group of Italian University Students on a Mission experience in the diocese of San Miguel, Buenos Aires (2002).
While serving in the inner city parish of Saint Andrews, Westland Row, Dublin, Bishop-elect Gavin collaborated in the initiative of the very successful ‘Second Chance Saturday’, Vigil Mass for Sunday, for those who had drifted from Church. This pastoral initiative invites and encourages people to give their faith a second change, reaching out through street ministry and offering social time and hospitality after Mass. Bishop-elect Gavin has led groups of young people to International World Youth Days in Madrid, Rio de Janeiro and Krakow. He has participated as a chaplain to the Dublin Diocesan Children’s Pilgrimage to Lourdes each year during Easter Week, travelling with a group of children with special needs and their helper-volunteers to Lourdes, France, and collaborating with leaders who plan, fundraise and train together as helpers in advance during the winter and early spring months.
He worked with the music director over the last nine years, developing the Gospel Choir in Our Lady of Victories Parish, Ballymun Road, Dublin, who, with a young adult group, animate a Mass for Young People in the parish every Sunday evening. The choir was especially chosen to lead the liturgical singing during Pope Francis’ meeting with engaged and newly married couples at Saint Mary’s Pro Cathedral, Dublin, during the 9th World Meeting of Families in Ireland in August 2018.
Adult Teaching Ministries
Bishop-elect Gavin taught canon law at the Milltown Institute of Theology and Philosophy, Dublin (2005-2011). He supervised students in the pastoral programme and a guest lecturer at Saint Patrick’s College, Maynooth (2008-2016). Bishop-elect Gavin taught those preparing for the permanent diaconate in the Archdiocese of Dublin (2009 – present) and taught students preparing for the permanent diaconate for the dioceses of Elphin, Kilmore and Achonry (2015 – present).
Training and Renewal
Bishop-elect Gavin has been invited to give diocesan priest days. He was part of the delegation representing the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference for the negotiation and implementation of new civil marriage legislation introduced in the Republic of Ireland in 2007. Bishop-elect Gavin led a working group charged with the review of the Pre-Nuptial Enquiry Form and associated pastoral guidelines on behalf of the bishops. He led the in-service formation for bishops, priests and deacons in the four ecclesiastical provinces of Ireland relating to the new Pre-Nuptial Enquiry.
Canon Law Associations
Bishop-elect Gavin is a member of the Canon Law Society of Great Britain and Ireland and has been a member and chair of the research and development sub-committee of the society (2004 – present). He has been a member of the Colloquium of Anglican and Roman Catholic Canon Lawyers for many years and given many presentations in that regard.
Doctoral thesis at the Gregorian University, Rome in canon law: Pastoral Care in Marriage Preparation (Canon.1063). History, Analysis, of the Norm and Its Implementation by Some Particular Churches (Pontificia Univerisità Gregoriana: Roma) 2004.
- Diocese of Cork & Ross
Bishop John Buckley was ordained Titular Bishop of Leptis Magna on 29 April 1984 and installed as Bishop of Cork & Ross on 6 February 1998. The diocese includes Cork City and part of County Cork. It has a Catholic population of 220,000 across 68 parishes and its patron saints are Saint Finbarr and Saint Fachtna.