Source: Effective Communications
Ceremonies to install Bishop Mark O’Toole as Catholic Archbishop of Cardiff and Bishop of Menevia will take place next week at St David’s Cathedral, Cardiff (Monday June 20) and St Joseph’s Cathedral Church from Swansea (Thursday 23 June) .
Appointed by Pope Francis, Bishop Mark O’Toole has served as Bishop of Plymouth since 2013. Succeeding Bishop George Stack, who has served in Cardiff since 2011, the new Archbishop will be installed in St David’s Cathedral, Cardiff on Monday June 20. , the feast day of the Welsh martyrs Saints Julius and Aaron.
As well as assuming oversight of Catholic communities in the Archdiocese of Cardiff, Bishop O’Toole also becomes the new Bishop of Menevia, a diocese that includes Swansea and surrounding areas. The two dioceses combined incorporate much of South and Mid Wales, alongside Herefordshire.
Having spent the last eight years as Bishop in the Diocese of Plymouth, ministering in the counties of Cornwall, Devon and Dorset, Bishop O’Toole looks forward to immersing himself in the communities of both dioceses.
Bishop O’Toole, 59, was born in London and spent much of his ministry there. He said, “I am grateful and humbled by the trust the Holy Father has placed in me. I face the task that awaits me with both enthusiasm and a certain anxiety, aware of my own weaknesses… it is with this deep sense that the Lord goes before all of us in this new mission, that I fully embrace this new calling in my life.”
Bishop O’Toole insists he “must listen and learn to begin with” and will deliver his homily at the Installation Masses in English and partly in Welsh.
He studied an MPhil in theology at Oxford University from 1990 to 1992, where his supervisor was the Lady Margaret Professor of Theology and Swansea-born former Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.
Bishop O’Toole’s predecessor, Bishop George Stack, said: “I warmly welcome the appointment of Archbishop-elect Mark O’Toole as Archbishop of Cardiff and Bishop of Menevia ‘in persona Episcopi’. This arrangement was made by the Holy See maintaining the identity, the legal reality, the history and the pastoral life of each diocese.
“Archbishop-elect Mark will bring great gifts to this new ministry. People in every diocese will be blessed by his experience as Bishop of Plymouth. His pastoral, theological and administrative skills will be of enormous benefit to us all. His national responsibilities as Chairman of the Department of Evangelism and Discipleship of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has been recognized by the Holy See for membership in the International Council of Catechesis His Celtic heritage will resonate with of the Catholic faithful in Wales and the wider community of his new home.”
Cardinal Vincent Nichols, President of the Catholic Bishops‘ Conference of England and Wales, said: “I offer Bishop Mark my fullest support and fervent prayers as he prepares to assume his new role. I am sure the Catholic community in Wales will warmly welcome him, as will the leaders of other churches there and those of civil society. St David and All Saints in Wales, pray for him .