Bishop

Bishop Michael Fabian McCarthy

Bishop Michael Fabian McCarthy - 10th Bishop of Rockhampton

Most Reverend Michael Fabian McCarthy, 10th Bishop of Rockhampton, was born in Toowoomba on 13 September 1950, the son of Fabian McCarthy and Rita (nee White), and brother to Peter. He spent his early years on the family dairy farm at nearby Greenmount.
 
He received his primary education at Greenmount State School and his secondary education at Downlands Sacred Heart College in Toowoomba before completing studies for the degree of Bachelor of Applied Science at the Queensland Institute of Technology (Darling Downs), now the University of Southern Queensland. He held a research position with BHP in Newcastle from 1971 until 1975.
 
Bishop Michael entered St Paul’s National Seminary (a member institution of the Sydney College of Divinity), graduating with a Diploma in Theology in 1978. He was ordained as deacon at St Michael’s Church, Daceyville in 1977, then as priest at St Stephen’s Cathedral in Brisbane in 1978. He continued his tertiary education with a Certificate in Tribunal Practices in 1986 and at the University of Queensland from which he graduated with a Master of Arts (Studies in Theology) in 1998.
 
He served as associate pastor first at St Patrick’s Parish, Gympie until 1983, then at St Vincent’s Parish, Surfers Paradise until 1985. He was appointed as Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies and Director of the Catholic Immigration Office for Migrants and Refugees until 1990. 
 
He was then appointed Parish Priest of St Patrick’s Parish, Laidley and then from 1993 until 1995 he was Parish Priest at St Vincent’s Parish, Surfers Paradise, as well as the Vicar Forane (Dean) of the South Coast. After serving as Administrator of St Paschal’s Parish in 1998-1999, he was appointed Parish Priest of Holy Cross Parish, Redcliffe where he was from 2009 until 2012, also serving as Vicar Forane (Dean) of Brisbane Northern Rivers for the same period. He was Parish Priest of Our Lady Help of Christians Parish, Hendra in 2013 and 2014 as well as Episcopal Vicar for Clergy in those same years.
 
Bishop Michael served as Director of the Formation of the Clergy (1995-2000) which was followed by appointment as Rector of the Holy Spirit Seminary (2001-2008). He has served on the Regional Matrimonial Tribunal from 1983. 
 
His appointment to the Episcopacy as 10th Bishop of Rockhampton by Pope Francis was announced on 10 March 2014.
 
Bishop Michael McCarthy's Motto and Coat of Arms

Bishop Michael McCarthy's Motto and Coat of Arms

Bishop McCarthy has chosen as his motto “Gloriari in Cruce” (Boast in the Cross) from St Paul’s Epistle to the Galatians 6:14.

Bishop McCarthy has chosen arms which, in the language of heraldry, may be blazoned as:
 
Per fess Argent and Gules, in chief a cross of St Michael the Archangel Gules (a cross pomme) and in base a stag Argent attired and unguled or which in plain English may be described as:
 
The shield is divided horizontally – silver half above is with a red cross of St Michael the Archangel and red half below is charged with the stag of the McCarthy clan in silver with horns and hooves gold.
 
These canting arms which represent the bearer’s name is a visual pun and say, in heraldic terms, Michael McCarthy.
 
During his service as Bishop of Rockhampton, the Bishop will use his arms impaled (two coats of arms joined on the one shield with a vertical line of division) with the arms of the diocese which were adopted by Bishop Rush (as he then was) in 1961. The diocesan arms are blazoned as:
 
Azure issuant from a chalice or a bezant charged with a tongue of flame Gules all between two hands respectant couped at the wrists proper, which in plain English may be described as:
The blue background and the chalice represent the Virgin Mary, the living chalice from whom came Jesus Christ, who, in turn, is represented by a red flame surrounded by a golden halo. The whole is protected by the enfolding hands of St Joseph, guardian of the Holy Family and patron of the Diocese of Rockhampton.
 
The Bishop’s arms were designed by Richard d’Apice AM and Sandy Turnbull of The Australian Heraldry Society and Fr Guy Selvester, and were emblazoned by Sandy Turnbull.

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