Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of February 21, 2005
Collins names Hamilton vicar general
By BILL GLEN
WCR Staff Writer
Msgr. John Hamilton says he was humbled when Archbishop Thomas Collins called him Feb. 14 to say he had been selected as vicar general of the Edmonton Archdiocese.
The position became vacant following the recent passing of Msgr. Don MacDonald. The archbishop had asked the priests of the archdiocese to suggest names of priests who they thought to be suitable candidates for the position.
"I believe I was considered because of my experience," said Hamilton, 67.
"I guess the archbishop thought I hadn't gone too far astray with some of my theological ideas. He asked if I would be willing to take on the position. I said that if he thought I have the goods and such confidence in me then I would be happy to serve any way I can."
As vicar general, Hamilton is essentially a senior advisor to the archbishop. He stands in for the archbishop at various functions if the archbishop is unable to attend. Hamilton believes he will be involved in more committees.
Collins was pleased Hamilton accepted the position.
"Msgr. Hamilton is an exemplary priest who has devotedly served the people of our archdiocese in many pastoral assignments," he said. "He brings to the office of vicar general great pastoral wisdom and experience and priestly dedication."
Born in Montreal, Hamilton studied at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia. He later moved to Edmonton and resumed his studies at St. Joseph Seminary. He was ordained in 1962 and served at St. Andrew's Parish and St. Joseph's Cathedral before joining the Edmonton Catholic school board as a teacher.
In 1973, he became pastor of St. Edmund's Parish and five years later, he was named archdiocesan chancellor and founding pastor of Good Shepherd Parish. In 1988, he entered the chancery office full-time for five years before becoming pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Red Deer.
He returned to Edmonton in 1996 and served four years at St. Matthew's Parish. He moved to Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Sherwood Park in 2000.
"I will continue as pastor here and resume sitting on the Council of Priests and the personnel committee," Hamilton said.
"I think I'll be joining the finance and planning committees in the archdiocese."
Hamilton will try to keep in touch with all of the priests in the archdiocese.
He will return from a Florida holiday in two weeks when he plans to sit down with the archbishop to further explore what is entailed in serving as vicar general.
"I'm a little overwhelmed by the whole thing.
"I don't know exactly what I'm getting into," he said.
"I trust the archbishop's faith in me.
"I hope I can live up to it and not betray that confidence. I am here to serve the archbishop and the people of the archdiocese as best I can."
Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 -- Western Catholic Reporter
Our mission: To serve our readers by bringing the Gospel to bear on current issues in the Church and in secular culture through accurate news coverage and reflective commentary.