His Holiness Pope Francis has appointed Father Michael Duignan, a priest of the Diocese of Elphin, as the new Bishop of Clonfert. The news of this announcement was made public today at 12noon in the Vatican (11.00am Irish time).
Bishop-elect Duignan concelebrated Mass at 11.00am this morning in Saint Brendan’s Cathedral, Loughrea with His Excellency the Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland, Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo; Bishop John Kirby and with priests of the diocese.
Archbishop Eamon Martin has congratulated Father Duignan onhis appointment. Archbishop Eamon also expressed his gratitude to Bishop John Kirby whose resignation as Bishop of Clonfert was accepted by Pope Francis. “I want to offer my prayerful congratulations and good wishes to Father Michael Duignan, whom Pope Francis has appointed as the new Bishop of Clonfert. Father Duignan’s varied pastoral experience in Elphin, particularly including his time in St Angela’s College, will bring rich experience to bear upon his new responsibilities as a diocesan bishop.”
“I also want to pay sincere tribute to Bishop John Kirby. Since 1988, Bishop Kirby has made an extraordinarily generous contribution to the work of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference. In particular, his chairing of Trócaire, his interest in justice and peace, and his concern for Irish emigrants and prisoners abroad have been hallmarks of his faithful service as a diocesan bishop and a member of the Bishops’ Conference. I pray God’s blessings on him and wish him good health in his new role as bishop emeritus.”