FATHER FRANCIS WALSH APPOINTED BISHOP OF ABERDEEN

Taken from the Middlesex Chronicle, 6th July 1951
(source: Andrew Rampling)





Superior of Heston White Fathers and parish priest of Heston since December 1948, Father Francis Walsh, D. D., D. PH., has been made CATHOLIC BISHOP OF ABERDEEN, it was learned this week.

Father Walsh was born in Cirencester in 1901 and educated at Blairs College, Aberdeen. He was ordained in 1925 after studying at the Scots College, and Gregorian University in Rome. He joined the White Fathers in 1929. Two years later he went to the Scottish borders to establish White Fathers at Melrose and Newtown St Boswells.

Better known in Scotland than in England, he has a faint hint of Doric in his speech, although he has no Scottish blood. Scholarly witty, unconventional, open minded and open handed, Father Walsh is something of an authority on church music. He has published works on Plainsong and Philosophy for the layman. He is expected back here from a short visit to his family in Scotland on July the 16th. a few weeks before his installation as Bishop.

In 1949, the new Provincial Fr Howell brought Fr Walsh down to Heston as Parish Priest and First Counsellor of the Province. His Parishioners soon came to know his pastoral zeal and endless charity. His sermons, though somewhat academic, always carried a punch line, which left one or other of his parishioners reeling.




Our Lady Queen of Apostles Church at Heston

Tramps increasingly found their way to the front door. One even took up RESIDENCE IN THE GARDEN TOOL SHED and came to be known as ST. JOSEPH BECAUSE OF HIS PATRIARCHAL APPEARANCE.

On the 22nd January 1951, Fr Walsh's name was put forward (secundo loco) to Rome as Bishop of Nyassa, and at the same time as Bishop of Aberdeen. Previously he had been considered for Uganda and Bangweulu. Bishop Matheson of Aberdeen had died of cancer after only three years on his See. Fr Walsh was highly recommended by Bishop Durrieu, who also, it seems, advised Fr Walsh to accept Aberdeen because of the great help he could give there to the missionary cause in Scotland.

His appointment was announced on the 28th June 1951. The next day was the Silver Jubilee of Fr Howell and of his old friend from Columbier days, Bishop Durrieu. This Jubilee was first celebrated at Heston where Bishop-elect Walsh, as Superior of the house and Parish Priest, spoke at the lunch. He recalled the close links that bound him both to the Provincial and to the Society.




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FAREWELL TO FATHER HAMES
RETURNING TO THE AFRICAN MISSIONS.

Taken from the Middlesex Chronicle, 15th November 1957
(source: Andrew Rampling)


Last Saturday evening the Catholics of Heston met in the White Fathers hall to say goodbye to Father Hames and to present to him a token of their affection and appreciation.

The parishioners' spokesman Mr. L. Dennis, the headmaster of Bulsrode School pointed out, that it was a joyful occasion. " As Catholics we have the true Faith and we don't want to keep it to ourselves." he said. "We are happy to have known such a priest as Father Hames and we are glad now that he is achieving his desire to return to Africa.

The monument to Father Hames will not be in the new church for which he has worked so hard, but in the minds and hearts of every man, woman, and child in this parish. As a tangible proof of their esteem, a Spiritual Bouquet, prepared by the parishioners, and a cheque for £256 collected by them, were present to Father Hames by Mr. Dennis.

Father Hames, in expressing his thanks, quoted one of the prayers of the Mass of the day. "How kind it is for brethren to be together." and went on to say, that the Spiritual Bouquet was the most important part of the giftit was a share in the spiritual life of the Catholics in Heston. He had been very happy at Heston, and whilst he was delighted to be returning to Africa, he was sad to be leaving. He promised to remember everyone in his prayers and at Mass.



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