Bishop David celebrated Mass for the Solemnity of Saint Joseph and his first anniversary as Bishop of Northampton
One year ago, a few close family and friends gathered in Northampton Cathedral to witness first-hand the installation of the thirteenth bishop of Northampton. Thousands more tuned in from their homes watching on the live stream as Cardinal Vincent Nicholls presided over the celebration. Who could have known what this first year would be like? Bishop David said “A number of people have commented how difficult it must have been and I don’t yet know what it is like to be a bishop in normal times”.
During his first year as Bishop of Northampton has experienced three national lockdowns, distanced, like us all from friends and family, especially challenging having moved into a completely diocese away from natural support networks. The first lockdown began just three days into his Episcopal ministry and the third is still ongoing. He did however, manage to get to every parish during June and July to meet the clergy of the diocese.
Bishop David has also spent this first year in prayer for our diocese and discerning God’s desire for our diocese. He has spoken many times of the need for each baptised person in the family of God to reach out to others in evangelisation and mission. He is passionate about the environmental issues, social justice and the need for us to be bold in faith as we return to a life beyond COVID-19.
Returning to the theme of Saint Joseph, Bishop David said,
“I deliberately chose to become a bishop on the Feast of Saint Joseph. But little did I realise what a powerful witness he would be to me, and indeed to all of us, during these past twelve months. Joseph had made up his mind on a plan of action. But then the Lord clearly leads him in a direction he had not imagined”.