Fr Tom Healy (Photo credit: Humans of Longford Facebook page, 2016)

Priest appointed to manage Ardagh and Clonmacnois diocese

The parish priest of Edgeworthstown in Longford, Fr Tom Healy, has been appointed as administrator of the Diocese of Ardagh and Clonmacnois, which is currently without a bishop.

Francis Duffy, who had been the bishop of the diocese for eight years, was installed this month as the Archbishop of Tuam.

This afternoon (Friday), the Catholic Communications Office announced that Fr Healy, a native of Rooskey on the Roscommon/Leitrim border, would be the diocesan administrator and would oversee its day-to-day operations until Archbishop Duffy's successor is appointed by Pope Francis.

Fr Healy will also also continue in his role as parish priest of Edgeworthstown.

Ordained a priest in June 1986, he previously served as a curate in Pullough, Offaly (1986 - 1988) and in St Mel's Cathedral in Longford (1988 - 2005).

Between 2005 and 2017, he was the administrator at St Mel's Cathedral and was centrally involved in its restoration and reopening following a devastating fire on Christmas Day in 2009.

He became parish priest in Edgeworthstown in 2017, and has also continued to serve as diocesan secretary and diocesan financial administrator since then.

His appointment was announced in the aftermath of a meeting of the College of Consultors, a group of priests which elects the diocesan administrator and assists with the governance of the diocese.

"I thank the College of Consultors for entrusting me with this role. I will endeavour to carry it out to the best of my ability," said Fr Healy.

"I would like to acknowledge the generous stewardship of Archbishop Francis Duffy over the past eight years. I wish him God’s Blessings in his new ministry in the Archdiocese of Tuam."

He concluded by asking the people of the diocese "for your kind support and prayers in the time ahead."

The diocese incorporates 41 parishes across the counties of Leitrim, Cavan, Longford, Westmeath and Offaly