by NZ Catholic staff

The College of Consultors in the Christchurch diocese elected Vicar-General Fr Rick Loughnan as the Administrator of the diocese.

The administrator is not a bishop but is entrusted with the power to run the diocese until a new bishop is appointed.
At the same time the Apostolic Nuncio, who is the Pope’s direct representative in a country or area and is the Pope’s diplomat from the Vatican State, initiates a process within the Diocese of Christchurch and in the country, of consultation among bishops, some clergy and members of the Church about who might be suitable to be a bishop of that diocese.
The process when complete is forwarded to Rome where it goes to the Pope who appoints the new bishop of that diocese.