New Vicar General begins duties

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Home > Media > News > New Vicar General begins duties
New Vicar General begins duties

Fr Shammi Perera has been appointed as Vicar General for the Archdiocese of Hobart.

He has taken over the role from Fr Michael Tate AO, who had submitted a letter offering his resignation from the role of Vicar General upon reaching the age of 75, in accordance with the requirements of canon law.

Fr Tate was ordained in 2000 following years of service as a Senator for Tasmania, including as Federal Minister for Justice from 1987-93, and as Ambassador to the Netherlands and the Holy See from 1993-96.

He has served in the role of Vicar General since March 2017, and will continue to serve as parish priest of South Hobart.

Archbishop Julian expressed his gratitude to Fr Tate for his advice and guidance during his time as Vicar General.

“In accepting his letter, I wish to express my personal gratitude for his service as Vicar General since 25 March 2017. He has brought his considerable talents and experience to the role, and has assisted me in fulfilling my responsibility of governance of the Church in Tasmania. I have appreciated his sound advice and guidance on many matters,” Archbishop Julian said.

“I wish Fr Tate God’s abundant blessings as he continues his priestly service in the Archdiocese of Hobart.”

Incoming Vicar General Fr Perera says that his first reaction to being appointed was one of surprise.

“But when I started praying and reflecting about the role and what it involves … I realised that in my life when God entrusts a mission to me I have never been ‘ready’,” he said.

God gives the grace necessary to fulfil the mission, says Fr Perera, who sees the role as a call to discipleship, to listen to God’s voice and radically love Him, to journey with his brother priests, deacons, and Christian brothers and sisters in Tasmania, and to be of help to Archbishop Julian.

Originally from Sri Lanka, Fr Perera was ordained to the priesthood on December 8, 2012 at St Mary’s Cathedral in Hobart.

His ordination card displayed the words of John 13:14 – “So if I, your Lord and Teacher have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.” He says that these words will continue to guide and inspire him in his new ministry.

Fr Perera, who has since become an Australian citizen, officially assumed his new duties on June 1.

“From the time this was announced, I have received a lot of prayerful wishes and congratulatory notes and a lot of strength from my brother priests and deacons and parishioners… they were very supportive, most of them rang me and [said] ‘We’re happy to journey with you.’ That’s a big consolation and a strength to me. At the end of the day they’re your brothers and sisters and you serve them, so it’s good that they will be journeying with me as fellow pilgrims.”

Fr Perera will continue to serve as administrator of the Cathedral Parish.