Pope appoints Rev Columba Macbeth-Green Bishop of Wilcannia-Forbes

Rev Columba Macbeth-Green, O.S.P.P.E.

Media Release, 12 April 2014

His Holiness Pope Francis has appointed the Reverend Columba Macbeth-Green, O.S.P.P.E. as the seventh Bishop of the Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes.

Reverend Macbeth-Green is currently the Vicar Provincial in Australia of the Order of Saint Paul the First Hermit (Pauline Fathers) and Rector of the Shrine of Mary Help of Christians, Marian Valley, Canungra, Queensland.

Rev Macbeth-Green is also the Police Chaplain for the South Eastern Region, Queensland since 2011.

“I welcome the announcement of Father Columba Macbeth-Green, OSPPE as the seventh bishop of Wilcannia-Forbes.  His appointment after a long interval will be warmly welcomed by the people as an indication of Pope Francis’ love and care for them,” Archbishop Denis Hart, President of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference said.

“Since his Ordination in 1997 for the 800 year-old Order of St Paul the First Hermit, Father Macbeth-Green has worked with distinction at the Shrine of Marian Valley in Queensland and in Tarcutta and Marian Hills. He has engaged spiritually with many people and his priestly goodness and wise guidance will be warmly welcomed by the people of his new diocese. For the Australian bishops, I extend warm congratulations,” Archbishop Hart said.

The Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes has been vacant since the resignation of Bishop Christopher Toohey on 9 June 2009.

Born in Forbes, New South Wales on 30 June 1968, Rev Macbeth-Green was educated at Red Bend Catholic College, Forbes. Upon leaving school, he taught music and joined the Army Reserve as a Piper.

In 1990, Rev Columba joined the Order of Saint Paul the First Hermit (Pauline Fathers). He studied for the priesthood at Vianney College, Wagga Wagga.

On 15 September 1996, he made his final vows and was ordained a priest on 22 November 1997.

“If someone told me a month ago that I would be appointed the Bishop of Wilcannia-Forbes Diocese, I would have said they were joking. I still can’t believe it’s actually happened,” Bishop-elect Macbeth-Green said.

“When I became a monk I never thought that I would minister to people in my home Diocese. I’m humbled by this appointment and also excited about going home and giving something back to the people who gave me so much,” Bishop-elect Macbeth-Green added.

From 2006-2011, Reverend Macbeth-Green was Police Chaplain at Police Headquarters, Brisbane and previously Police Chaplain in Camden local area command (2002-2006) and Wagga Wagga local area command (2000-2002).

Reverend Macbeth-Green was Administrator of Moss Vale, Diocese of Wollongong between 2004-2006.

In 1997, Rev Macbeth-Green was Administrator of Tarcutta, Diocese of Wagga Wagga. Between 2002-2004, Rev Macbeth-Green was Subprior of the Shrine of Our Lady of Mercy.

Media Release from ACBC (Word 106KB) (PDF 130KB)
Media Release from Wilcannia-Forbes (PDF 234KB)
Official announcement and Macbeth-Green CV (Word 1.1MB) (PDF 1.1MB)
Image: Bishop-elect Columba Macbeth-Green (JPG 4.6MB)

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