The Dean of Raphoe, Very Reverend Arthur Barrett, is to leave the Diocese of Derry and Raphoe early in the new year to take up a new appointment as Rector of the Arklow, Inch and Kilbride Group of Parishes in the Diocese of Glendalough. The news was announced to parishioners in the Raphoe Group after this afternoon’s Service of Morning Prayer from Clonleigh Parish Church in Lifford.
Commenting on his appointment, Dean Arthur said, “I am humbled and honoured to have been appointed to the Arklow, Inch and Kilbride Group of Parishes. Brigid and I are excited by the opportunity to serve in this new phase of ministry. While leaving the Diocese of Derry and Raphoe, and the Raphoe Group of Parishes will be difficult, we are greatly looking forward to serving and working with the people in Arklow, Inch and Kilbride, as we seek to discern God’s will for these parishes in south Wicklow and North Wexford.”
After ordination, Dean Arthur served as Incumbent in parishes in Dublin, Sligo and Enniskillen, before being instituted as Dean of Raphoe Cathedral in 2014. Two years ago, he launched an ambitious project to restore the cathedral, as a result of which a new roof was built recently.
“Having to break this news to you in this manner – looking into a camera and in an empty church – is by no means ideal, and certainly not the way that I would have wanted to be able to do it,” Dean Arthur told parishioners watching the service online, “but unfortunately, such are the times that we are living in.”
He asked parishioners in both the Raphoe and Arklow Groups of Parishes to hold the Barrett family in their prayers – “as we will be praying for them” – as they all entered a new time of transition and challenge.
The new appointment will take effect in mid-January, 2021 and the Dean’s ministry as Dean of Raphoe and Rector of the Raphoe Group of Parishes will conclude on Sunday 27th December.