On Friday, Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Archbishop Kevin McDonald of the Archdiocese of Southwark in London, England. Archbishop McDonald, who has had triple bypass heart surgery and suffers from severe osteoarthritis, submitted his resignation in response to medical advice.
“I feel great sadness at having to relinquish my post as Archbishop of Southwark,” said Archbishop McDonald on Thursday in a letter to his archdiocese. “Although I have to contend with illness over the last three years, this appointment has been a great grace. It has been a privilege to lead this great Diocese and I have received a wonderful response to everything I have tried to do.”
According to the website, Catholic Hierarchy, Archbishop McDonald was ordained a priest in 1974 and became secretary of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity in Rome from 1985-1993. He was ordained as the Bishop of Northampton in 2001 and eventually installed as archbishop of Southwark in 2003.
The prelate continued in his statement Thursday saying that he has been “very appreciative of the prayers of so many people while I have been ill” and that “the Diocese will continue to be very much in my thoughts and prayers in the time ahead.”
According to the Southwark Archdiocese website, a Diocesan Administrator will be appointed as temporarily in charge until a new archbishop takes possession of the archdiocese.