Dunedin's new Bishop Ordained

On Thursday, 26 April 2018, the Catholic Church will ordain Bishop-Elect Michael Dooley as the new Bishop of Dunedin.

On 23 February, the Vatican announced the appointment of Father Michael Dooley as the next Bishop of the Dunedin Diocese. He will be the seventh Bishop of Dunedin and succeeds Bishop Colin Campbell who will has been acting in the role of administer for the Diocese since the announcement.

The Ordination will take place in the Dunedin Town Hall, with an expected crowd of over 1000 attending including clergy, civic leaders and other Church leaders. The Vatican’s diplomatic representative, Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Martin Krebs will be in attendance. 

The Ordination will be followed on Friday morning with the Installation Mass at 9.30am in St Joseph’s Cathedral.  This Mass marks the reception of the bishop in the cathedral church of the diocese, at which he will preside for the first time with the priests and members of the Diocese.

President of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference (NZCBC), Bishop Patrick Dunn, expressed the joy of the Conference and the New Zealand Catholic community on the Ordination.  “We welcome wholeheartedly Bishop Michael Dooley.  Thursday, 26 April 2018 will be an important day for our new Bishop and for everyone in the Dunedin diocese. We pray for Bishop Michael as he prepares for his ministry among us.”

Current Bishop, the Most Reverend Colin Campbell, said of the appointment “we feel most blessed to be able to welcome Bishop-Elect Michael into this role and know his extensive knowledge of and work in this diocese will be welcome and gratefully appreciated.  I have been blessed with Michael as my Vicar-General and in the last eighteen months, taking on the role of financial administrator, he has done a sterling job with this portfolio in the diocese. We are all truly blessed by Pope Francis’ choice of Michael as the seventh bishop of the Dunedin Diocese.”



Bishop-Elect Michael Dooley 

Born in Invercargill in 1961 to parents, Joseph Dooley and Mary Hogan, Michael was educated at Heddon Bush Primary School and Central Southland College.

Bishop-Elect Michael completed an engineering apprenticeship as a fitter and turner before entering Holy Cross College in 1984.

This followed with study at Otago University where he did a Bachelor of Theology, followed by a Master of Theology at Melbourne’s College of Divinity.

Father Michael Dooley was ordained on 13 December 1989. From 1995, he has served as a member of the Priests Council and was a Parish Priest for over 10 years in Southland and Otago. 

 His other roles have included:

1990 – 1993    Chaplain, Verdon College, Invercargill

1994 – 1995    Chaplain, St Peters College, Gore

1998-1999       Director, Holy Cross Formation Centre, Mosgiel

2005 – 2007    Formator and Spiritual Director, Holy Cross Seminary, Auckland

2009 – 2017    Chaplain, Kavanagh College, Dunedin

Bishop Colin Campbell

After his studies in philosophy at Holy Name Seminary, Christchurch and theology at Holy Cross College, Mosgiel,  Bishop Colin Campbell was ordained a priest in Dunedin by Bishop Kavanagh on 27 June 1966. After some time in a parish, he went overseas to study Catechetics and Liturgy in London and Germany. On his return, he combined his pastoral work with his work in the Catholic Education office with Fr. Leo Close. Later on, he completed a Masters in Ministry through Otago University. His roles as Parish priest throughout Otago, included Dunedin, Waikiwi, Green Island and Bluff. Appointed as Rector of Holy Cross Seminary, Auckland in 2000, he spent over three years in this role. He was ordained Bishop for the Dunedin Diocese by his predecessor, Leonard Anthony Boyle at Dunedin's Town Hall on 9 July 2004. Upon, Bishop-Elect Michael’s Ordination, he will become Bishop Emeritus of Dunedin.