During the Australian bishop’s Ad Limina Apostolorum visit to The Vatican in late June, Bishop Columba Macbeth-Green, Bishop of Wilcannia-Forbes, spoke to journalist Ines San Martin from Crux.
If you ever find yourself driving along the solitary roads of the far West region of New South Wales in Australia, you might run into a man. He will be driving a car with a camper-trailer, and his lone companion will be a fluffy little dog (it answers to “Molly”); there will also be the sound of bagpipes or country music blasting from the radio.
You have just come into contact with Bishop Columba Macbeth-Green.
The Diocese of Wilcannia-Forbes is unique for many reasons, one of which is the fact that geographically speaking, it’s the largest diocese with neither a coastline nor a city with more than 20,000 people. Just to give an idea, it’s the size of France.
As large as it is, it’s far from being the most populous diocese in the world: There are 105,000 people in the region covered by Macbeth-Green, only 30,000 of whom are Catholics.
The primary place Macbeth-Green gives to humor came through loud and clear during his hour-long conversation with Crux, and he insisted several times that it’s all about the Joy of the Gospel.
“If you don’t find something each day that makes you smile, even if it’s a butterfly, something that gives you some real joy, you have a spiritual problem,” he said. “You get into the vortex of doom and gloom, and everyone around you will get sucked into it.”
“But a bishop, as a leader of the Church, is a minister of hope and the joy of Jesus Christ in the middle of whatever,” he said.
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With thanks to Crux and Ines San Martin, where this article originally appeared.