It is with a mixture of sadness and gratitude that I have heard this morning the news that Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Seán Brady upon reaching the canonical age of 75.
Cardinal Brady, has led the Irish Church through a very challenging period. He has sought at all times to respond honestly to the past, while seeking to be an agent of renewal in the Irish Church.
I have known Cardinal Seán Brady since 1990, when I went to work with him at the Pontifical Irish College in Rome. My experience of him during the three years when we lived and worked together was of a gentle leader and a good listener. His care for those in need was very practical and no task was too menial for him.
Throughout his years in Rome, Cardinal Brady, maintained a strong interest in the GAA and in local politics and community affairs in his native County Cavan. He would not have been the kind of man to seek high office. Nothing made him happier than the thought of returning as parish priest of Ballyhaise, County Cavan in 1993; and, even as Primate of All Ireland, he has remained a "people’s priest".
On behalf of the people of the Diocese of Elphin, I extend my best wishes and the promise of our prayers to Cardinal Brady on his retirement.
I look forward to working closely with Archbishop Eamonn Martin. I wish him every blessing and offer him my personal support in his role as Primate of All Ireland. I ask the people of the diocese to remember him in their prayers as he takes on his new mission as Archbishop of Armagh.
Bishop of Elphin