WelCom March 2021
Fr Mathew Vadakkevettuvazhiyil has been appointed as the next Rector of Holy Cross Seminary in Auckland, to succeed the present Rector, Fr Brendan Ward, at the end of 2021.
The Vatican’s Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples confirmed the appointment, announced in February.
Fr Mathew is widely known as a parish priest in the Auckland Diocese, and has served at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart in Epsom, and at St Mary of the Immaculate Conception in Avondale. From the beginning of this month he will be parish priest at Holy Cross, Papatoetoe, before starting his seminary role at the end of the year.
Fr Mathew was born in 1960 in Kerala, India and ordained a priest there in 1992 with the Society of St Francis de Sales (Salesians of Don Bosco). He was a missionary, teacher and administrator at Salesian education institutes in Tanzania and Kenya and an assistant parish priest and administrator in Kenya until coming to New Zealand in 2009.
As a diocesan priest in Auckland, Fr Mathew is Deputy Chair of the Justice and Peace Commission, and a member of the Council of Priests and College of Consultors.
Cardinal John Dew, Archbishop of Wellington and President of the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference, welcomed the announcement on behalf of the bishops.
‘We congratulate Fr Mathew, offer him our prayerful support, and will give him the practical support he needs.’
Holy Cross Seminary is the national seminary for the education and formation of diocesan priests for the Catholic Church in New Zealand. The student body reflects the increasing diversity of peoples for whom New Zealand is home and is comprised of men from a wide range of countries and cultures, age and life experience.