Sunday 17 December 2017

Cardinal errors

• Your report on possible successors to Cardinal Brady makes for interesting speculation. Surely, the time is ripe for a major change in the organisation of the Irish hierarchy, with the replacement of the system of primacy by an elected president and vice-president of the episcopal conference, as happens in many other countries such as England and Wales and the US.

In today's Ireland, the Catholic Church should not be tied to a system that presumes it will be led by a northerner, who will in due course be made a cardinal.

The idea that the new bishop is likely to be selected from outside the country is also interesting. Among the very successful Irish-born bishops with well-acknowledged pastoral records serving abroad are Michael Campbell of Lancaster, Seamus Cunningham of Hexham and Newcastle, George Stack of Cardiff and Kevin Farrell of Dallas.

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