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New Archbishop

The following briefing was made by the Scottish Catholic Media Office:

Pope Francis has today, July 24, 2013, appointed Monsignor Leo Cushley as Archbishop of St. Andrews & Edinburgh.

The new Archbishop will take over the governance of the Archdiocese from Archbishop Philip Tartaglia who has been Apostolic Administrator following the resignation of Cardinal Keith O'Brien, who was Archbishop from August 1985 until March 2013.

Mgr Cushley is presently Head of the English-language section of the Vatican’s Secretariat of State and has been a close collaborator of both Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. In his capacity as Prelate of the Anticamera Mgr Cushley has been regularly involved in the visits of Heads of State and other important guests to the Holy See.  Recently he has assisted as Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, the Archbishop of Canterbury and many other high profile visitors called upon the Pope.

As Head of the English section of the Secretariat of State it was his task to accompany the Holy Father to English-speaking countries.  During

2010 he accompanied Pope Benedict to Malta and Cyprus as well as the United Kingdom. During that visit, at Bellahouston, Mgr Cushley had the pleasure of presenting his family to Pope Benedict.

Commenting on his appointment, Mgr Cushley said: “I am humbled that our Holy Father Pope Francis has nominated me for such an important task here in our ancient capital.  I know it's a delicate moment and that there is a lot to be done, but with God's grace and the kind support of the clergy and people of Edinburgh, I will work cheerfully and willingly with all the energy I can muster.

“There are certain important questions that I will also have to familiarize myself with. I have no jurisdiction in the diocese until after I have been ordained in late September.  Only then will I be able to take stock of what has happened and see what can be done.

“It is my sincere hope to do this always in truth and in charity, with a view to reconciliation and healing among the Catholics of Edinburgh. My first task is to preach the good news, Christ crucified and risen from the dead, to confirm my brother priests in their Catholic faith and ministry, and to be a loving, simple, wise shepherd to the flock that has been entrusted to me.”