The Holy Father has appointed Mgr Philip Egan, currently Vicar General of the Diocese of Shrewsbury, to become the eighth Bishop of Portsmouth, in succession to Bishop Crispian Hollis who is retiring.
Commenting on his appointment, Mgr Philip Egan said:
“It is with trepidation and yet with profound trust in the loving mercy of the Sacred Heart of Christ, that I accept the Holy Father’s appointment as the new Bishop of Portsmouth, in succession to dear Bishop Crispian. I look forward with joy to working with my fellow priests and with all who minister in parishes, schools and other contexts, caring for the people of God. May we all together be in the closest communion of heart and mind with our Holy Father, Pope Benedict, and faithful to his call to new evangelisation. The ministry of the Bishop, as the chief shepherd, priest and teacher of the flock entrusted to him, involves carrying the Lord’s Cross in a particular way. So as I begin this ministry and look to the years ahead, I sincerely ask you for your prayers, together with those of our brothers and sisters in the other Christian communities and indeed of every person of faith and goodwill. May Mary, Queen conceived without original sin, and St. Edmund of Abingdon, obtain for us a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit, that all may come to know, serve and love Our Lord Jesus Christ”.
Welcoming the appointment, Bishop Crispian Hollis said:
“I warmly welcome the appointment by the Holy See of Mgr Philip Egan to be my successor in the Portsmouth diocese and becoming its 8th Bishop.
Mgr Philip brings a wide experience of the life of the Church to this new post. He is a theologian and has been Dean of Studies at St Mary’s College, Oscott; he has been until now an able administrator in the diocese of Shrewsbury, serving as Vicar General, as well as a being an excellent parish priest in the bread and butter world of parochial ministry.
He takes over the diocese at a particularly important time in the history of the diocese (erected in 1882). Bishop Crispian Hollis has, in his 23 years as bishop, overseen the restructuring of the diocese. There is a Pastoral Plan for the diocese – Go out and Bear Fruit – which is in process of implementation and because of the launching the “Living Our Faith” appeal, there is nearly £13 million available for that implementation of the Pastoral Plan, thus setting up the diocese for its future in the 21st century.
Mgr Philip brings his undoubted pastoral and administrative skills to further the progress that the diocese has made in recent years and the implementation of the Pastoral Plan, and his appointment is just what the diocese needs.
He will be made very welcome by the clergy and people of the diocese and everyone is looking forward to working with him in the proclaiming and living of the Gospel”.
The Episcopal Ordination will take place at the St John’s Cathedral, Portsmouth at 2.30 pm on Monday September 24th.2012.