Our Parish Priest is Father David Long, he started in the Parish in October, 2020.
I was born on 24 September 1958 in Pensby on the Wirral. We moved to Wallasey in 1961 and it was there that I was brought up. I went to St Alban’s Primary School, St Hilda’s Middle School and then St Mary’s College. After school I studied theology at St Andrews University gaining a Master of Theology Degree. During my time at university I decided to apply to the Diocese to train for the priesthood. I was accepted by Bishop Grasar and was sent to the Venerable English College in Rome for my seminary formation gaining a Licence in Fundamental Theology.
I was ordained to the priesthood in my home parish of St Alban’s, Wallasey by Bishop Gray. My first appointment was as assistant priest to Our Lady and the Apostles in Stockport. After three years there I was asked to take up a position as assistant priest to Mgr Chris Lightbound, the Vicar General, at St Teresa’s, Wilmslow. After six years in Wilmslow, Bishop Gray asked me to take up an appointment as Parish Priest of Holy Family in Pensby, the town where I was born. He asked me to build a church there and it was a moment of great joy when the Church was built and opened just round the corner from where I had been born. Following the opening of the new Church I was asked to move as Parish Priest to Our Lady and St Christopher’s in Romiley. I spent five years in Romiley before Bishop Brian asked me to move to my home parish of St Alban’s in Wallasey. I spent thirteen years “back home” during which I was asked to take on the pastoral care or Our Lady Star of the Sea and St Joseph in Seacombe and to bring the two parishes together as one new Parish. After a wonderful thirteen years in Wallasey I was asked to move back to Our Lady and the Apostles in Stockport where I spent three years as Parish Priest before being asked to come to St Vincent’s here in Knutsford. As I begin my time with you here in Knutsford I look forward to working with you all to help our Parish grow in Service of the Gospel.
In addition to my parish responsibilities I have taken on various other roles within our Diocese. For nine years I worked as Vocations’ Director supporting men who offered themselves to serve our Diocese as priests; it was a huge privilege to work with so many as they sought to discern God’s will for them. Over the years I have worked extensively in adult and parish formation seeking to develop collaborative ministry in many parishes across the Diocese. I was given the opportunity to study for a Masters Degree in Pastoral Theology through the Loyola Institute in New Orleans. This not only helped me to renew and update my theological understanding but helped me to relate it to my pastoral work as a priest. For the last four years I have been Diocesan Director for the Lourdes Pilgrimage which normally takes up to 700 people on Pilgrimage to Lourdes each year including a large contingent of young people. I have also organised several pilgrimages to the Holy Land and also to Rome for our Diocese.
I love to travel and discover new cultures. As well as extensive travels in Europe especially to Italy, Spain, France and Greece I have travelled to several places in South East Asia and the sub Continent. In my last two parishes we have developed links with a Parish in Siem Reap in Cambodia. It has been a great joy to take small groups to discover the life and work of the Church in missionary work in Siem Reap. They were inspiring and challenging visits to all of us who took part. As well as travelling I love to walk with my dog Meg and have a special love for Cornwall and walks on the beaches and rugged cliffs.
Previous Parish Priests
The following is a list of the previous parish priests who have served in St Vincent’s since its foundation in 1861…..
1861-1865 Father Hugh Lynch
1865-1867 Father Henry Alcock & Father Daniel S Casey
1867-1876 Father Daniel S Casey
1876-1879 Father Patrick O’Reilly
1879-1900 Father Robert Roberts Maurice
1900-1906 Father John Henry Roche
1906-1909 Father Thomas Mullins
1909-1917 Father Albert Morrisey
1917-1920 Father Edward D Kirby
1920-1934 Father John James Ryan
1934-1935 Father J H Campbell
1935-1941 Father Peter J Coughlan
1941-1944 Father Maurice A Stone
1944-1948 Father William C Corcoran
1948-1951 Father John Gildea
1951-1961 Father Michael Barry
1961-1968 Father James Joseph Matthews
1968-1980 Father Wlifrid Kelly
1980-2001 Canon Joseph Cahill
2001-2020 Father John Joyce