On the Feast of the Assumption I was privileged to attend the episcopal ordination of the Bishop of Aberdeen, H.E. Bishop Hugh Gilbert O.S.B. at St Mary's Cathedral in Aberdeen.
|Motto: Omnia in Ipso constant|
All things hold together in Him (Christ)
His Eminence Keith Patrick Cardinal O'Brien was the principal Consecrator with Archbishop Conti of Glasgow (previously a Bishop of Aberdeen) and Bishop Emeritus Moran of Aberdeen as co-consecrators.
It was wonderful to see all the community of Pluscarden attend this historic occasion and quite rightly participating in the Mass in singing the Introit, Gospel Acclamation and leading the singing of the Litany of the Saints.
Sitting behind me was one of Scotland's premier composers, James Macmillan, who had composed a very pleasing Motet "Ecce Sacerdos Magnus" especially for the Bishop's ordination.
On a historical note this is the second occasion a superior of Pluscarden Abbey has become the Bishop of Aberdeen; albeit the first time was almost 500 years ago in 1529 when Pope Clement VII appointed the then Prior Learmond coadjutor Bishop with right of succession.
In his address during the reception after Mass the Bishop hinted that changes would be forthcoming but had only one to announce that day. Fr. Stuart Chalmers (my ex parish priest) was to become the diocese's Vicar General replacing Canon Mann.
I regret I have no photographs of the event as when attending a priestly ordination the previous month in the Cathedral, it was announced that no photography, other than by the official photographer, was permitted. I was a little annoyed to be informed that I could take photographs this time around - of course I had left my camera at home.
As a footnote the Bishop will still be known by his religious name Hugh, rather than his birth name of Edward, as he remains a Benedictine monk and, as he told me a few week's earlier, will retire to Pluscarden.
Please pray for His Excellency Bishop Hugh Gilbert O.S.B.