Archbishop Julian Charles Porteous DD, B. Theol. was born on June 5, 1949, Sydney and baptised in Rose Bay Parish. The eldest of five children, with two brothers and two sisters, Archbishop Julian has family links to Tasmania. His forebears arrived in Tasmania from England in 1853. His great grandfather and great grandmother were both born in Hobart, within one kilometre of St Mary’s Cathedral. His grandfather was named Manful Charles Hobart Granger.
Archbishop Julian completed his primary education in Melbourne, Singapore and Parramatta before he undertook secondary schooling with the De La Salle Brothers at Oakhill College, Castle Hill.
Vocation and priestly service
Archbishop Julian entered St Columba’s Seminary, Springwood, in 1968, then continued studies for the priesthood at St Patrick’s College, Manly, from 1971. He was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Sydney on September 7, 1974.
Archbishop Julian served as an assistant priest in the parishes of Kingsgrove, Manly, The Entrance, Woy Woy and Mona Vale within the Archdiocese of Sydney, and in 1996, he was appointed administrator of the Parish of Annandale. In 1999 he was appointed parish priest of Dulwich Hill.
Archbishop Julian has always been actively involved in evangelisation, particularly among young people. He organised a number of evangelisation rallies, including Jesus Christ at Manly Oval (1983), and Jesus Christ at Belmore Oval (1984), to reach out to young Catholics.
He was instrumental in establishing the Pastoral Training School (now known as the Summer School of Evangelisation) which, since 1984, has formed thousands of young Catholics in their Catholic faith and in the pastoral skills necessary to contribute to the Church’s evangelising ministry.
In January 2002 he was appointed Rector of the Seminary of the Good Shepherd in Sydney, in and served in this role until the end of 2008.
Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney
In July 2003 he was named Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney by Pope St John Paul II and was ordained by Cardinal George Pell at St Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney on September 3, 2003.
He has been an advocate of the New Evangelisation called for by Pope St John Paul II. He was responsible for evangelisation and renewal in the Archdiocese of Sydney until his appointment as Archbishop of Hobart.
In this capacity, Archbishop Julian established an Office for Evangelisation, CREDO, which has been responsible for a number of important evangelisation initiatives including Walk with Christ (an annual procession of the Blessed Sacrament through the streets of Sydney), Sydney Congress Embracing the New Evangelisation (a week-long mission based at St Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney), Open the Doors to Christ (parish missions), and several colloquia on the New Evangelisation (equipping Catholics for the evangelising mission of the Church).
He also established CRADIO, a digital radio service which promotes the New Evangelisation through the new media, now associated with Parousia Media.
Archbishop Julian has also been involved with a number of new ecclesial movements. He actively promotes the role and work of the new ecclesial movements as a grace given to the Church in our time to renew the Catholic faith and promote the evangelising mission of the Church.
He had been assigned the Titular See of Urusi, which is in modern-day Tunisia.
Archbishop of Hobart
Archbishop Julian was installed as Archbishop of Hobart in a Reception and Solemn Mass of Installation at St Mary’s Cathedral in Hobart on September 17, 2013.
His episcopal ministry in Tasmania has focused on the renewal of parishes, the encouragement of religious life, the development of youth ministry, marriage and evangelisation, and the establishment of the Christopher Dawson Centre for Cultural Studies to advance the Catholic Intellectual Tradition within the Archdiocese of Hobart, and beyond.
He has begun or overseen a number of new initiatives, including the annual Corpus Christi Eucharistic procession Walk With Christ, state-wide parish Mission Evenings, the Evangelium Conference, the youth event Gracefest, and the St Patrick’s Pilgrimage for youth and young adults.
His Grace is a member of the Bishops Commission for Evangelisation, Laity and Ministry, and is responsible for the Ecclesial Movements. He is a regular speaker at conferences and events, both in Tasmania and on mainland Australia, as well as overseas, and is Patron for Shalom Media Australia.
Coat of Arms
When Archbishop Julian was appointed as Auxiliary Bishop of Sydney and titular Bishop of Urusi in July 2003, in the tradition of the Church, he adopted personal arms. These arms have been redesigned for his use as Archbishop of Hobart.
The personal arms are divided horizontally. The upper half is charged with a representation of the Holy Spirit derived from the Bernini-designed window above the altar in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The lower half is charged with the Book of the Word with the letters alpha and omega in red.
Archbishop Julian’s personal arms are accompanied by the arms of the Archdiocese which have been in use since their adoption by Archbishop William Barry in 1937. They have remained unchanged since this time but have been re-rendered. These arms are blazoned with the silver initial “M” on a blue field. The “M” is the initial letter of the name of the Virgin Mother of God which is surmounted by the gold celestial crown of the Queen of Heaven.
Behind the arms is the gold processional cross of an archbishop with its double traverse. The shield is surmounted by the green galero (Roman hat) with ten fiocchi (tassels) appropriate to an archbishop.
Archbishop Julian’s personal arms were designed by Fr Guy Selvester and Richard d’Apice AM KCSG, President of The Australian Heraldry Society, and the full achievement of arms has been illustrated by Sandy Turnbull, also of the Australian Heraldry Society.
Archbishop Julian’s episcopal motto is Gratia et Veritas (Grace and Truth).
St John the Evangelist describes the Lord as bringing “grace and truth” (John 1:17). Grace is the work of the Holy Spirit which brings about conversion and the nurturing of faith. Truth is revealed by the Holy Spirit who enlightens the mind, leading us “into all truth” (John 16:13).