And the new archbishop is…
At 11am today Bishop Bernard Longley was unveiled as the next Archbishop of Birmingham.
The Westminster auxiliary bishop succeeds Archbishop Vincent Nichols as the head of the archdiocese which covers the counties of West Midlands, Oxfordshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire.
Bishop Longley emerged in March as a leading candidate for the then vacant see of Westminster. The speed of his appointment to Birmingham suggests that the Vatican and Pope Benedict XVI have great confidence in his abilities.
The archbishop-elect is highly regarded for his industriousness, intelligence and personal warmth. When I interviewed him this summer he was coming to terms with his sudden prominence in the Church in England and Wales. But I’m certain he’ll rise to the demands of his new position.
You can watch a video of the archbishop-elect, speaking shortly after he received the news.
Here’s the official press release.