catholicregister.org December 6, 2020 3
Retiring Ottawa archbishop to administer northern Ontario diocese
BY BRIAN DRYDEN Canadian Catholic News
Retiring is proving to be difficult for Archbishop Terrence Prender- gast. Prendergast was looking forward to having time to reflect and perhaps travel now that the day-to-day responsibility of running one of the few truly bilingual dioceses in Canada was coming to an end. But just days before he was to give his final Mass as the Arch- bishop of Ottawa-Cornwall, Prendergast was appointed by Pope Francis Nov. 30 as apostolic administrator for the Diocese of Hearst-Moosonee, where he will oversee the diocese until a new bishop is appointed following the resignation of Bishop Robert Bourgon. Bourgon resigned Nov. 29 following complaints of his handling of two priests in the diocese who, along with their parish secretaries, are facing fraud accusations. Bourgon had been subject to review by the Congregation of Bishops since August. In Hearst-Moosonee, Prender- gast will oversee a large yet sparsely populated area of northeastern Ontario where 27,000 Catholics live in a diverse diocese of Indig- enous, Anglophone and Franco- phone faith communities. The new mission for Prender- gast is not how 2020 was supposed to end for the proud Jesuit. But then again, with a global pandemic continuing to impact daily life around the globe, not much about 2020 has gone the way it was supposed to. Prendergast was to retire on Dec. 3 after celebrating Mass at Ottawa's Notre Dame Cathedral to mark the silver jubilee of his ordination as a bishop, handing the reins to Archbishop Marcel Damphousse, co-adjutor arch- bishop since May when the newly formed Archdiocese of Ottawa- Cornwall was established. But his "retirement" is different than first envisioned when he originally submitted his resignation to Pope Francis at age 75, customary by Canon Law. For one thing, Prend- ergast is now 76. He was to become Archbishop Emeritus and his successor, , was all set to give his first Mass as the new archbishop of the diocese on Dec. 8. But now it is on to northern Ontario. It's been an eventful 13 years serving in the nation's capital for Prendergast. He was named the ninth Archbishop of Ottawa in 2007 and apostolic administra- tor of the Diocese of Alexandria- Cornwall in January 2016, before becoming the first Archbishop of Ottawa-Cornwall when the two dioceses merged. That makes him the only archbishop to received three pallia for three archdio- ceses from three popes. In 1999 he received the pallium from St. Pope John Paul II as Archbishop of Halifax, then in 2007 as Archbish- op of Ottawa he received a second pallium from Pope Benedict XVI. Earlier this year Pope Francis bestowed his third pallium for his episcopal service in the newly- formed Ottawa-Cornwall archdio- cese. Prendergast, who was born in Montreal, was first ordained a bishop in 1995 when he was named auxiliary bishop in the Archdiocese of Toronto. Three years later he was appointed the 11th Archbishop of Halifax, where he served until 2007 before moving on to Ottawa. He said when he was first appointed to Ottawa his experience coming into the post was a lot different than his roles in Toronto and Halifax. "In both Toronto and Halifax, I had already spent a lot of time there, so I knew the cities and I knew the faith communities to a large extent. You are always learning and you never know ev- erything but I was familiar with those places," Prendergast said. "Coming to Ottawa was different, I really didn't know many people and I was not as familiar with the city so I had to learn a lot about the community," he said. "It was a very different experience, but sometimes coming in with 'new eyes' can be helpful. "I am honoured to have served as leader of the Archdioceses of Ottawa and Ottawa-Cornwall for 13 years," Prendergast said. The statement from the archdi- ocese praised his work in fostering interfaith co-operation, noting his relationships with leaders in the Jewish and Islamic communities." Prendergast himself wishes he could have done even more on that front now that his time as Ottawa- Cornwall's archbishop ends. "I have developed some lasting friendships with people like Rabbi (Reuven) Balka who is retired like me, but I wish I had put more attention towards that especially in the early years when I first got here," said Prendergast, adding he also wished he had been able to do more to evangelize Francophone youth in the diocese. But now that his time as arch- bishop in Ottawa is over, and even though there is another mission he has been tapped to undertake by Pope Francis in the immediate future, his time in Canada's capital city will stay with Prendergast forever. "This large and generous community of faithful Catholics will continue to encourage me in my faith journey," he said.
BY WENDY-ANN CLARKE The Catholic Register
As a man naturally drawn to problem solving, Fr. Ivan Camilleri says he finds fulfilment in helping others in their journey of faith. It's come in handy in his role as Chancellor of Spiritual Affairs with the Archdiocese of Toronto, where Camilleri has had to remain flexible as he manages various matters of faith from assisting people getting married to the many facets of pastoral care. "Helping people under just the general umbrella of things, I find for myself to be very satisfying," said Camilleri. "God gives us the grace to deal with things, so maybe that's a bit of the grace God gives me to deal with the various issues that come." Camilleri looks forward to serving the community in whatever capacity he is called in his new role as auxiliary bishop of the arch- diocese. The bishop-designate will join three other auxiliary bishops - Bishops John Boisson- neau, Robert Kasun and Vincent Nguyen - assisting C a r d i n a l Thomas Collins, in Canada's largest diocese. "I am very humbled by the trust that Pope Francis and Cardinal Collins have placed in me to serve the Archdiocese of Toronto in this ministry," said Camilleri in a Nov. 28 statement. "I am grateful to His Eminence for his leadership and support, and I look forward to serving him and the people of the archdiocese in this way." On top of looking after spiritual affairs in the archdiocese, Camilleri also serves as Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia. "I am most grateful to Pope Francis for the appointment of Bishop-designate Camilleri as the newest auxiliary bishop in our archdiocese," said Collins. "He knows the community well and has been a tremendous source of support during my time as arch- bishop. I welcome him to the epis- copacy and invite the priests of the archdiocese as well as the faithful to pray for him as he prepares for this new chapter of ministry." The youngest of three brothers, Camilleri was born in Sliema, Malta, in 1969 and moved to Canada with his family in 1980. He earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ont., and a master's in business administration from The Edinburgh Business School. From there it was on to a career in the financial sector. In 2001, at age 32, he entered the seminary, completing a Bachelor of Sacred Theology and a Master of Divinity and was ordained to the priesthood on May 12, 2007. He describes his call to the ministry after years of working in finance as bringing a simple yet profound sense of peace in his spirit. "It wasn't a huge epiphany like St. Paul," said Camilleri with a chuckle. "I was happily working in finance in merger and acquisi- tion related work which I found very good. I enjoyed it very much, but I also felt I was being called to something else. "I explored a vocation to the priesthood by talking to some priests, a spiritual director and so forth. Around 2001, I decided to just try the seminary for a year to see if it worked out. I found great peace at the seminary and great joy. The rest is history so to speak." Camilleri also studied at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and completed a Licentiate in Canon Law in 2011. Following his ordination, in 2007 Camilleri was appointed associate pastor at Merciful Redeemer Parish. He also served as a sessional lecturer at St. Augustine's Seminary and a judge with the archdiocese's Marriage Tribunal. Camilleri will be ordained to the episcopate at a date to be deter- mined before commencing his new responsibilities in the diocese that is home to two million Catholics and 225 parishes.
Problem solved: Camilleri appointed Toronto auxiliary
Prendergast's retirement on hold
Bishop-elect Camilleri Outgoing Ottawa-Cornwall Archbishop Terrence Prendergast stands beside a portrait of himself.
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