Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Philip Moger

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Bishop Philip Moger was ordained an auxiliary Bishop for the Archdiocese of Southwark by Archbishop John Wilson on Tuesday 21 February 2023 at 12:30pm in St George’s Cathedral.

Cardinal Arthur Roche, prefect of the Dicastery for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, were in attendance, along with many of the bishops of England and Wales, and the priests of the Archdiocese of Southwark.

Bishop Moger, who was formerly the Rector for the National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, was a priest of the Diocese of Leeds for 40 years.

He gave an address at the end of the ordination, saying: “As you know I served until two weeks ago as the Rector of the National Shrine of Our Lady in Walsingham, and that appointment was as much a surprise as this one.”

He added: “It was a great privilege in Walsingham to enter into the drama of Our Lady’s ‘yes’ to God’s incredible invitation, and with others, in some small way, to draw pilgrims into that mystery, into that drama, and into a deeper understanding of their own vocation.

“And if that is your constant theme as the Rector of the Shrine, to pilgrims, trying to get them to imitate Our Lady’s ‘yes’ to God, how can you refuse when it comes to you? And now the God of surprises has been active again, and they say, of course, that if you want to make God smile then tell him your plans.

“I was scarcely able to believe my ears when I was told of my appointment”.

Archbishop Wilson gave a homily, lauding the faithfulness of Bishop Moger’s acceptance of the appointment.

Archbishop Wilson said: “Thank you for your ‘yes’ to a future unknown to you, but known fully to God. Your time in Walsingham has obviously not been wasted. Having taken to heart Our Lady’s own fiat you can now echo her faithfulness in accepting God’s choice according to God’s will.

“Let your ‘yes’ be shaped by the unique yes of Our Blessed Mother. Have within yourself a humble, yet confident entrustment to God’s plan that you should serve the Church as a bishop. Such faith enables you to lay down your life freely for the new flock which you have been called to shepherd.”

Bishop Robert Ladds, former Anglican Bishop of Whitby, was present, as well as a number of Anglican priests, including Reverend Kevin Smith, the administrator of the Anglican Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham.

The Mayor of Lambeth, Pauline George, and the deputy Mayor of Kingston-Upon-Thames, Councillor Nicola Nardelli, also attended.

Please keep Bishop Moger in your prayers as he embarks on this important new chapter in his ministry.