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Auxiliary ordained Fr John Sherrington was ordained an auxiliary bishop in Westminster on Wednesday. Bishop Sherrington will take over responsibility for parishes in Hertfordshire and become chairman of the Diocesan Education Commission. In a homily at Westminster Cathedral, Archbishop Vincent Nichols said: “Your episcopal ministry will bring you great joy but, so too, many challenges.”

Governors change Paul Barber, the Archdiocese of Westminster’s director of education, has resigned as a governor of the Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School in west London, and been replaced by a parent of a current pupil. Another parent has been appointed as an associate governor and will be a full member when a vacancy arises. The parent governors, who took the diocese to court over the appointment of Mr Barber and other new governors last year, have welcomed the move. The governing body is due to appoint a new head teacher.

Rose Castle campaign A campaign has beeen launched to stop the sale of Rose Castle, the residence of the bishops of Carlisle since the thirteenth century. The Church Commissioners are meeting next Thursday to decide whether to put it on the market. Running costs are about £150,000 a year. The Friends of Rose Castle believe ways can be found for the building to generate income to sustain itself.

New rector Fr Ciarán O’Carroll has been appointed as the new rector of the Irish College in Rome. He is currently episcopal vicar for evangelisation in the Archdiocese of Dublin and succeeds Mgr Liam Bergin, who held the post from 2001. The college has 60 students, with half coming from Ireland and the rest from around the world.

Daly calls for end to clerical celibacy

Sarah Mac Donald In Dublin

THE FORMER Bishop of Derry has called for an end to manda- tory priestly celibacy. Dr Edward Daly, who rose to prominence when he was pictured waving a white handkerchief during the Bloody Sunday shootings in 1971, makes the suggestion in his newly published memoirs, A Troubled See: memoirs of a Derry bishop. “There is certainly an import - ant and enduring place for celibate priesthood,” he writes. “But I believe that there should also be a place in the modern Catholic Church for a married priesthood and for men who do not wish to commit themselves to celibacy. Admission of married men to the priesthood could well

create new problems and issues. However, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, major decisions must be made.” Dr Daly, 77, who was Bishop of Derry from 1974 to


describes celibacy as “an obliga- tion that has caused many wonderful potential candidates to turn away from a vocation, and other fine men to resign their priesthood at great loss to the church”. He told The Tablet that one of his most “heartbreaking tasks” as a bishop was when priests left the ordained ministry to get married. “We lost some very, very fine priests as a result of that.” In the book he adds: “If things continue as they are, a lot of parish communities will not have a priest in a few years’ time, and

McMahon leads arms fair vigil

THE BISHOP of Brentwood, Thomas McMahon, has led 200 people in a candlelit vigil outside the world’s largest arms fair in London, writes Helena Hickey. The vigil, held on Monday

evening, took place outside the Defence and Security Equipment International weapons fair at the ExCel Centre in Docklands, east London.

It was one of a series of protests against the arms industry organ- ised by a coalition of campaign groups, including Pax Christi. Those present remembered the hundreds of thousands of people who die each year as a result of the arms trade.

■Lambeth Palace has refused to deny a report that the Archbishop of Canterbury plans to step down next year, writes Christopher Lamb.

The Sunday Telegraph claimed earlier this week that Archbishop Rowan Williams is ready to retire after the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in June 2012 and return to academic life. A spokesman for Lambeth

Palace said: “We would never comment on this matter.” Sources close to the archbishop told The Tablet that Dr Williams

36 | THE TABLET | 17 September 2011

Bishop McMahon has fre- quently spoken out against weapons proliferation, and has taken part in the prayer vigil event since the biennial exhibition relocated to London’s Docklands in 2001. This year’s protest took on a

particular resonance in the light of the Libyan conflict. “I find it scandalous that this

country is one of the biggest exporters of arms in the world,” said Bishop McMahon. “Within the last year, the UK

has exported weapons to repres- sive regimes such as Libya, Egypt and Bahrain, where protesters have been cruelly suppressed.

would step down in time for his successor to prepare adequately for the next Lambeth Conference, the once-in-a-decade meeting of Anglican bishops, to be held in 2018. By that time, Dr Williams will be 68. Although Church of England bishops are not required to retire until 70, in practice most quit earlier. The newspaper also reported

that Cambridge University was ready to offer Dr Williams a professorship, although a university spokesman described this as “pure speculation”.

Advanced weapons are sold to countries at war with each other or to regimes that oppress their own people or attack their neighbours.” Bishop McMahon complained that money “which could be spent on much-needed health services, education or agriculture is used to purchase weapons”. His comments contrast with those of Defence Secretary Liam Fox, who said that he was “proud” that the UK was the world’s second-biggest defence exporter and stressed that the importance of the arms industry for economic growth was in the national interest.

The archbishop was appointed

to Canterbury in 2002 and has worked hard to maintain Anglican unity, particularly in the face of disputes about homosexuality. Earlier he was Lady Margaret

Professor of Divinity at Oxford University and before that dean and chaplain of Clare College, Cambridge. In 2007, he took a three-month

sabbatical at the Jesuit-run Georgetown University, Washington DC. (See Jonathan Wynne-Jones, page 8.)

those that they have will be older, weary and greatly overworked.” He asks, why should celibacy be “the great sacred and unyield- ing arbiter, the paradigm of diocesan priesthood?” He hopes “that senior members of the clergy and laity [will] make their views more forcefully known”, adding that sceptical views on celibacy were often expressed privately but seldom in public. Fr Sean McDonagh, of the

Association of Catholic Priests, urged the Irish hierarchy to sup- port Bishop Daly’s call rather than go “down the cul-de-sac” of a married diaconate, which he warned would “clericalise laity” instead of looking to a “different kind of priesthood”. The priest- hood should “be open to male, female, married or celibate”.

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