New Auxiliary Bishop calls appointment “a humbling experience”

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The new Auxiliary Bishop for the Archdiocese of Southwark, Monsignor Philip Moger, has expressed his gratitude at his new appointment, underlining the huge responsibility the role will entail.

Speaking to us shortly after a private Mass following the announcement, Monsignor Moger said:

“Firstly, it was a great surprise to be asked to be a bishop anywhere. That was the first thing. It’s a very humbling experience because to become a bishop is a great thing. It’s a huge responsibility, to know that I was being appointed to Southwark as an auxiliary.”

The bishop-elect discussed his long-term friendship with Archbishop John Wilson:

“Archbishop John Wilson was a delight, because we have known each other for a long time. I’ve known him since before he went to seminary. We are both from the Diocese of Leeds – that’s two of us in Southwark from Leeds.

“It’s a very humbling experience to be asked, and also very joyful. For the last two years I’ve been working in Walsingham as Rector of the National Shrine. So I’d already moved temporarily away from Yorkshire. You know, people are the same everywhere. The Gospel needs to be preached.”

Monsignor Moger finished with a message to the people of the Archdiocese of Southwark, noting the diversity and vibrancy within the archdiocese.

The Bishop-elect said:

“The message is that Christ came for all people – that the Church is truly Catholic. When all of us come together, whatever our age, whatever our background, whatever our skills, whatever our abilities, it is important we share those gifts to build up God’s kingdom and build up each other as members of Christ’s Church, the Christian community.”