My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ.
This is my first letter to you as the successor of Monsignor Anton Argreiter mhm. So let me introduce myself to you.
I was born, at the outbreak of the second world war, in the North East of England, in a town called Middlesbrough. After leaving school at the age of fifteen, I was a salesman for about five years. Then in 1960 I was drafted into the Army as a National Serviceman. In fact I continued to serve a regular soldier for a total of eleven years. I then worked for British Rail until 1973 when I began my formal studies for the Priesthood with the Society of African missions (SMA).
I was ordained on the 14th May 1978, the feast of Pentecost. My first mission appointment was to the northern part of Nigeria in West Africa. In 1982, I was recalled back to the UK to undertake administrative appointments for the next sixteen years. I was then asked to go to Nairobi, Kenya until June 2001. Then last August, the Holy Father appointed me the new Prefect Apostolic of the Falkland Islands and the Ecclesiastic Superior of St Helena. Ascension and Tristan da Cunha.
I want you to know just how humbled and honoured I feel to be asked to serve you in this new role. My prayer is that we will journey together, on our pilgrim way, to that future promised to us by the birth of our Blessed Lord.
Mgr Michael Bernard McPartland SMA
St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha.
Tuesday, 4th March 2003
This letter will be updated in July 2008. Apologies for the inconvenience and frozen website. That's fixed now.