Catholic Youth Parramatta

Message of Condolence from Vatican on death of Bishop Joseph Angelo Grech


A letter from Archbishop Antonio Maria Vegliò, President of the Pontifical Council for Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, to the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

It is with astonishment and deep sadness that I received the information that His Excellency the Most Reverend Joseph Angelo Grech, Bishop of Sandhurst, Victoria, and Delegate of the Bishops’ Conference of Australia for the pastoral care of Migrants and Refugees, passed away at St Vincent’s Private Hospital, in Melbourne.

Bishop Joe offered the whole of his life as a wonderful witness to Jesus Christ. He devoted his priestly and Episcopal ministry to reach out especially to young persons. The people of his Diocese of Sandhurst will surely testify of his love for humanity and his great enthusiasm for the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I myself, together with the Rev Fr Gabriele F Bentoglio, Under-Secretary of this Dicastery of the Holy See, and the whole staff of this Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, would like to underline Bishop Joe’s strong commitment to the issues of migrants and refugees. I appreciated and supported him when he frequently spoke out on the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees in Australia. I did admire him particularly when he matched his interventions with pastoral action and did whatever he could to the benefit of many sisters and brothers in detention centres.

I wish to express my heartfelt condolences to you, to the members of the Episcopal Conference of Australia and to Bishop Joe’s family members. I assure you of my prayers for the rest in peace of his soul, with the certainty that the Good Shepherd has already welcomed into Eternal life this generous and committed pastor of His flock.

Yours sincerely,


Archbishop Antonio Maria Vegliò


Funeral Mass of Bishop Grech

'A holy and gentle pastor' – Bishop Joseph Angelo Grech, 1948-2010


« Return to news list