Palace of Westminster


2 Auxiliaries Named for Westminster

One a Native of Northern Ireland, the Other a Former Anglican

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Pope Francis has appointed Fr. Paul McAleenan and Msgr. John Wilson as auxiliaries of the archdiocese of Westminster, England.

Paul McAleenan was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 1951 and was ordained a priest in 1985. He has served in a number of pastoral roles in the Archdiocese of Westminster, including parish vicar and parish priest. He is currently canon of Westminster Cathedral.

John Wilson was born in Sheffield, England, in 1968, was baptised in the Anglican Communion and received in the Catholic Church in 1985. He was ordained a priest in 1995. He holds a bachelor’s degree in theology and religious studies from the University of Leeds, England, a bachelor’s degree in theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, a licentiate in moral theology from the Alphonsianum of Rome and a doctorate in ethics from the University of Durham, England. He has served in a number of pastoral and academic roles in the Diocese of Leeds, including parish vicar, professor of moral theology, episcopal vicar for evangelisation, and apostolic administrator. He is currently parish priest in Wakefield, Yorkshire. In 2011 he was named Chaplain of His Holiness.

The Archdiocese of Westminster has a population of close to 5 million, but with only 485,000 Catholics. They are served by about 600 priests, 18 permanent deacons and more than 1,200 religious. 

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