‘For Church and Pope’ - three priests receive Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice
|Father Eric Burton receives the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice from Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP at the 2011 Diocesan Chrism Mass. At the Mass, Fathers David Scott and Les Campion were also announced as recipients.|
Photo: Alphonsus Fok & Grace Lu
Three long-serving priests of the Catholic Diocese of Parramatta - Fathers Eric Burton, David Scott and Les Campion - have received the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice 2011.
The announcement was made by the Bishop of Parramatta, Most Rev Anthony Fisher OP, at this year's Chrism Mass at St Patrick's Cathedral Parramatta on Wednesday 20 April.
Also known as the ‘Cross of Honour’, the medal was established by Leo XIII in 1888, and is currently given for distinguished service to the Church by lay people and clergy.
The announcement of the honour at the 2011 Diocesan Chrism Mass is not the first blessing Frs Eric, David and Les have shared on the same day: all were ordained priests on 22 July 1950, in the same ceremony at St Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney.
Fr Eric Burton
Fr Eric Burton was appointed the founding Parish Priest of Christ the King Parish North Rocks 1970, and served in that role for 41 years until his retirement earlier this year.
Since his retirement, Fr Eric has continued to serve the North Rocks Parish as Pastor Emeritus.
Fr Eric was born in Newtown in 1925. After finishing school, Fr Eric worked for a short time as a telephone technician before entering the seminary at Springwood in 1942.
Fr Eric said the highlight of his priestly ministry had been celebrating the Mass and the sacraments with the people of God and endeavouring to meet the needs of the faithful.
Fr Eric celebrated the 60th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood with a special Mass at Christ the King Church in July 2010.
Fr David Scott
Fr David Scott was appointed founding pastor of St Paul the Apostle Parish Winston Hills in 1970, where he served until his retirement in 2010.
|Bishop Anthony presents Fr David Scott with the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice.|
Fr David says he was aware of his calling to a priestly vocation before he finished his school days in Randwick, entering St Columba’s College in Springwood after the intermediate and completing his studies at St Patrick’s Manly.
His childhood Parish Priest Fr Charles Foley was Fr David’s mentor and inspired his decision to enter the priesthood.
Fr David celebrated 60 years as a priest in March last year with a special Mass at St Paul the Apostle Church.
Fr Les Campion
Fr Les Campion was Parish Priest of Holy Trinity Parish Granville from 1975 until his retirement in 2007.
|Bishop Anthony presents Fr Les Campion with the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice 2011.|
He is perhaps best known for the pastoral care he was able to give on the day of the Granville rail disaster in 1977, when an express train from Mt Victoria bound for Central Station derailed at the Bold Street Bridge.
Fr Les was the first religious minister to arrive at the scene of the accident which claimed the lives of 83 people and seriously injured 213.Prior to his retirement, Fr Les was also Chairman of the Board of Marian Nursing Home, which was established by the Diocese of Parramatta in 1970.
Monsignor humbled to serve God’s people
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