Dear brothers and sisters in the Diocese of Dromore,
Last year, on Monday of Holy Week (26/3/2018), following the resignation of Bishop John McAreavey, Pope Francis appointed Bishop Philip Boyce OCD, as the Apostolic Administrator of the diocese of Dromore.
One year on from that announcement, the Holy Father has asked me to take over the role of Apostolic Administrator from Bishop Boyce. I thank Bishop Boyce for so willingly giving up a full
year of his retirement to step in at short notice and accept governance responsibility for the Diocese of Dromore.
I am humbled by this request from Pope Francis and grateful for his confidence in me. Whilst continuing my roles as Archbishop of Armagh and President of the Irish Episcopal Conference it will now also be an honour for me to serve you – the people, priests and religious of Dromore – during this transitional time for the diocese. I aim to provide as much stability as possible for Dromore as we await the Holy Father’s decision regarding the appointment of a new bishop in the future.
One of my first priorities in the diocese will be to receive a full briefing on safeguarding issues and to be updated on any statutory investigations into these matters. I shall, of course, fully cooperate with developments in this regard.
I will also strongly encourage the positive pastoral initiatives and administrative developments already underway in the diocese to ensure that the parishes of Dromore remain vibrant, missionary and in a state of readiness for the future.
Although in many ways as Archbishop of Armagh I am already your “next door neighbour”, I look forward to getting to know you better and to learning and appreciating the unique characteristics of this historic diocese of Dromore.
I am looking forward to my first visits to the Cathedral of St Patrick and St Colman in Newry for the Chrism Mass on Holy Thursday at 10.30 a.m. and for Easter Sunday Morning Mass at 10.00 a.m. I will be praying for you there. Please pray for me.
Thank you and may God bless you all.
Most Rev Eamon Martin, Apostolic Administrator