Adelaide's Wilson elected as Bishops Conference President

Adelaide's Archbishop Philip Wilson has been elected as the new president of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

The vote was taken among the 42 bishops present at the Plenary Meeting of the Bishops Conference on Friday in Sydney.

Archbishop Wilson, 55, was previously the Bishop of Wollongong and was ordained a priest of the Maitland-Newcastle Diocese. He succeeds Archbishop Francis Carroll, 75, whose term as President has expired.

Archbishop Barry Hickey of Perth was elected as Vice-President, succeeding Archbishop John Bathersby of Brisbane, whose term had also ended.

Archbishop Wilson said he was humbled to have been elected President.

"I am very humbled and honoured to have been elected President of the Bishops' Conference by my brother Bishops and I hope to serve them, the Church and the people of Australia to the very best of my ability.

"I am particularly honoured to follow in the footsteps of Archbishop Francis Carroll who has led the Conference with such dignity, faith and wisdom for the last six years."

Archbishop Carroll congratulated Archbishop Wilson and wished him well in his new role.

"Archbishop Wilson has given great service to the Church in Australia throughout his priestly and Episcopal life," he said.

"In this time he has shown himself a true servant and a true leader and he has won the respect and admiration of all the bishops."

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference meets in Plenary Session twice each year and its works are carried out by a number of committees, commissions and organisations. The President and the Vice-President are elected for two-year terms and can serve for a maximum three terms.

Also elected were the members of the Permanent Committee. They are Cardinal George Pell, Archbishop John Bathersby, Archbishop Denis Hart, Archbishop Adrian Doyle, Bishop Michael Putney and Bishop David Walker.

Archbishop Philip Wilson elected as Australian Catholic Bishops Conference President (Australian Catholic Bishops Conference 6/5/06)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Australian Catholic Bishops Conference
Archbishop Philip Wilson's Website (Archdiocese of Adelaide)

ACU National honours Archbishop Francis Carroll (CathNews 4/4/06)
Archbishop grateful for 'birthday present' (CathNews 13/10/05)

Wilson to head Bishops Conference (ABC News 5/5/06)

8 May 2006