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Fr David Dowling (NZCBC)

The Vatican’s Dicastery for Evangelisation has confirmed the appointment of Fr David Dowling as the new rector of New Zealand’s national seminary in Auckland. Source: NZ Catholic.

Fr Dowling, a priest of the Wellington Archdiocese, will take over the role in April from the present interim rector and former Dunedin bishop, Bishop Emeritus Colin Campbell.

Holy Cross Seminary is the national seminary for the education and formation of diocesan priests for the Church in New Zealand.

Fr Dowling said that he is committed as rector to following the example of Pope Francis in cultivating the joy of the Gospel with a sense of being part of God’s people.

“I am inspired and encouraged by the teaching of Pope Francis, who sees priestly formation as service, not simply as the transmission of a body of teachings, but also the art of concentrating on others, bringing out all their beauty and all the good that they carry within,” Fr Dowling said.

“As Francis has said, ‘we can only be missionary disciples all together’. As a human formator at the seminary, I have endeavoured to encourage and challenge our seminarians to be fully human, mature, and capable of healthy relationships. We minister through our humanity and personality, opening ourselves to being transformed by the Spirit of Jesus.

“I hope to help form our seminarians to understand what it means to live ‘generative service’, which Pope Francis describes as ‘the identity card’ of Christ’s ministers.”

Auckland Bishop Stephen Lowe, who is president of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference, said Fr Dowling is a “prayerful man, who has had a rich pastoral experience as a priest of Wellington and who has done an excellent job of being the human formator”.


Fr David Dowling appointed as new rector of Holy Cross Seminary (NZ Catholic)