Judicial Vicar from Auckland wins prestigious Canon Law award


Judicial Vicar Monsignor David Price has been recognised for his outstanding service to the Canon Law Society of Australia and New Zealand with an Owen Oxenham Memorial Award. Monsignor Price of Auckland was presented with the award at the 45th Annual Conference of the Canon Law Society held in Melbourne from 12-15 September.

There have been only two other recipients of the award, first presented in 1994 in honour of the Society’s founding president Owen Oxenham. In an address to the 2011 Conference delegation, the Society’s current president Father Anthony Leo Kerin said the award has turned out to be “rare and extraordinary”, with over twenty-two worthy members having been awarded life membership but only three having received the Owen Oxenham Memorial Award.

Father Kerin noted that Monsignor Price had served more years on the Society’s Executive Committee than off it since he was first elected as Vice President in 1979. He was elected President in 1986, a position he held until the Society’s Silver Jubilee Conference in Brisbane in 1991.

“He has presented eight keynote papers at our conferences over the years and penned 9 scholarly articles in our newsletter and most recently in the Canonist,” said Father Kerin. “His first conference paper in 1981 entitled “Protection of Rights in the New Code” won him many fans. A prescient presentation based on the schema as it stood at that time, his scholarship was evident”.

“Monsignor David Price has served the bishops of New Zealand with astute judgement and wise counsel, he has served the Pontifical Council for the interpretation of Legislative Texts as a consultor. But even setting aside his presidency from 1986 until the Silver Jubilee Conference in Brisbane in 1991, his many years of service on the Executive and his stalwart attention to the demands of Canon Law, it is his affable friendship generously bestowed upon all fortunate to spend time in his company that endears him to us,” said Father Kerin.

Monsignor Price says he is “honoured to have received the award, and grateful to the many wonderful people” he has met in the Society. “I have learnt much from them and appreciated being with them. I trust I have been able to return part of what I have received from others,” says Monsignor Price.