Popular Londonderry Church of Ireland cleric the Rev Dr William Morton, who hails from Poyntzpass, has been appointed Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin, writes Billy Kennedy.
The 59-year-old former Armagh journalist has been Dean of the historic St Columb’s Cathedral in Londonderry for 19 years, having previously been a rector in Letterkenny, Co Donegal.
Dean Morton, a former news reporter with the Ulster Gazette in Armagh, will replace in Dublin the Rev Victor Stacey, who retired in March.
St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin is recognised the national cathedral of the Church of Ireland, with a distinguished predecessor of Dean Morton - 18th century prelate and academic Dean Jonathan Swift.
Deeply committed to the arts, Dean Morton is an accomplished organist and has diversified the role of St Columb’s Cathedral, Londonderry, in hosting a number of cross-community events in the form of exhibitions, lectures, seminars and guided tours.
He has also been very involved in several community initiatives and worked closely with the loyal orders in the Maiden City, particularly the Apprentice Boys.
Dean Morton is a regular pulpit contributor to the News Letter Saturday church pages.
Church of Ireland Primate the Rev Dr Richard Clarke said Dean Morton will draw on his extensive and valuable pastoral experience in this important role.
Dublin Archbishop the Rev Dr Michael Jackson also extended his good wishes to Dean Morton and welcomed him to the senior Dublin position.
Dean Morton, married with three sons, was educated at Trinity College, Dublin and Queen’s University, Belfast.
He was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for the City of Londonderry in October 2014.