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Veteran Lancaster priest installed as bishop

Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Edward Adams (left) greets Bishop Swarbrick (right) and Bishop Campbell (centre) (Mazur/

A priest who has served parishes in the Diocese of Lancaster for decades has been installed as its new bishop.

Bishop Paul Swarbrick, 59, was ordained at St Peter’s Cathedral, Lancaster, on Monday.

In his homily, the outgoing Bishop Michael Campbell said Bishop Swarbrick must have been “disturbed” by the news of his appointment and, in the weeks since, had been “trying to come to terms with what Pope Francis was asking”.

But he said that, like Mary when faced with the angel Gabriel, Bishop Swarbrick was helped by the deep faith of those around him.

Bishop Campbell said: “Mgr Paul, the Catholic faith of Lancashire in which you were nurtured and brought up through the example of your parents and family, enhanced by the priests and parishioners of St Mary and St Michael’s, Garstang, as well as your subsequent pastoral ministry both at home and abroad, enable you today to step forward courageously in faith and be ordained as bishop.”

He said Bishop Swarbrick would have “many tasks and concerns” as bishop. “But remember,” he said, “that you will be ministering in faith to a people of faith. As their chief shepherd, you will pass on what has come down to us from the Apostles.”

Bishop Swarbrick, formerly parish priest in Workington, Cumbria, told a local paper, Times and Star: “It does seem quite daunting and there are feelings of inadequacy but that leads to feelings of deeper trust that the Lord knows what He is doing even if I don’t.”

The diocese covers most of Lancashire and all of Cumbria up to the Scottish border.