The General Assembly, which has been meeting in Taiwan for the past two weeks, has elected Irishman Fr Tim Mulroy as the new Superior General of the Missionary Society of St Columban.
Fr Mulroy is a former primary school teacher. He has been regional director in the US for the past six years.
Originally from Meelick, Swinford, Co Mayo, Fr Mulroy attended Meelick NS and St Patrick’s Secondary School, Swinford.
He became a Columban seminarian in 1987 and was ordained at Our Lady Help of Christians Church, Swinford in 1995.
The 54-year-old worked in parish ministry in Japan from 1995 until 2002, when he went to the US as director of formation at the Columban International Seminary in Chicago, a role he held for nine years.
Afterwards he served in parish ministry at St Pius X Parish in El Paso, Texas before he was elected Regional Superior in November 2012, a role he continued in until 2018.
He succeeded Fr Arturo Aguilar, who became Columban Vicar General in 2012.
The new Vicar General of the Society is Fr Brian Vale from New Zealand, who is currently serving as Regional Director in ANZ. He has worked in Japan
Joseph Kang, Vice-Director in Korea, has been elected second councillor. He studied theology in Maynooth and spent six years in Peru.
The other councillor is Chilean Fr Alvaro Patricio Martinez Ibañez. He is the youngest son in a family of ten children.
Fr Alvaro joined the columbans in 1994. Between 1995-1996 he studied philosophy at the Major Seminary in Santiago (Chile).
Then in 1997, he spent a number of months in Ireland studying English before he went to Fiji in 1998 to do his FMA.
Between 1999-2002, he studied Theology at CTU (Chicago) and was ordained a deacon in November 2002. He returned to Chile in 2003 where he was ordained to the priesthood in May of that year.
Between 2004-2011, Fr Alvaro acted as co-ordinator for vocations and headed up the formation house in Chile. In May 2011, he was appointed as regional director for Chile and he continued in this role until 2017.
He had been due to take up a new assignment in the US region but will now take up his position with the general council in Hong Kong.
You can hear Fr Tim Mulroy explain what drew him to the Missionary Society of St Columban and what continues to inspire him here: https://columbans.ie/the-columban-call/
Images from the General Assembly: