Pope names Archbishop Coleridge to lead Brisbane Catholics

Archbishop Mark Coleridge
Archbishop Mark Coleridge

.- Pope Benedict XVI has named Australian Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Canberra-Goulburn as the new Archbishop of Brisbane.

“At a time in life when many are looking to retire, I have been called to take up the greatest challenge of my life,” Archbishop Coleridge said April 2. “With few illusions about myself or the task that awaits me in Queensland, but with trust in the Lord who sends me, I pack my bags and head north once again.”

The archbishop said he is “heartened” by the choice and “grateful” to the Pope for the trust he has placed in him.

Archbishop Coleridge, 63, is a theologian and teacher with expertise in Sacred Scripture and the Catholic liturgy. He served as chairman of the international committee responsible for the new English translation of the Roman Missal. He also chairs the committee preparing the forthcoming new lectionary of scripture readings for the Mass, the Archdiocese of Brisbane reports.

Before his 2002 appointment as auxiliary bishop of Melbourne, he was an official in the Vatican’s Secretariat of State and served as a papal chaplain.

The archbishop was born and educated in the southeast Australian state of Victoria. He was ordained a priest in Melbourne in 1974.

The Archdiocese of Brisbane has about 640,000 Catholics in a population of 2.8 million, its census data show. Its area covers 29,700 square miles.

Archbishop Coleridge’s installation Mass as Archbishop of Brisbane will be held May 11 at St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

The archbishop said he was “deeply grateful” for his six years as Archbishop of Canberra and Goulburn.

“Until recently, I never imagined that I would be appointed Archbishop of Brisbane, following in the footsteps of some remarkable men,” he said. “I will do my best, but that will not be enough. Yet the Lord equips those whom he sends in ways they could never equip themselves.” 

He said he puts his life in God’s hands and at the service of the Church in Brisbane.

“It is harder to do what a bishop must do at a complex time like this in the Church when the future must be made, not just awaited,” he said. I commit all my energies and gifts to that apostolic task in Brisbane, looking more than ever to the Lord of Easter, Jesus Christ crucified and risen.”

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