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I gladly send congratulations and good wishes to Father Francis Duffy on hearing the news that Pope Francis has chosen him to be the next Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois in succession to the much loved Bishop Colm O’Reilly.
I have known Father Duffy for many years and I am confident that he has the gifts and qualities needed. His experience in Catholic education, parish ministry and diocesan administration have shown his excellent ability to lead people by word and example and prepared him well for this day.
I know for certain that he will have many prayers from the parishioners he has served, so generously and so often over the years and from many others as he takes up his new appointment.
Today I also pay a well-deserved tribute to Bishop Colm O’Reilly for his faithful and faith-filled service to the Irish Bishops’ Conference for the past thirty years. In particular I thank him for his work as Chairman of the Council for the Missions, President of Cura and his contribution to the establishment of the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland.