An interesting little tid bit. This regarding the case of Bishop James Wingle, the abdicating bishop of St. Catharine’s Ontario who was born and raised in Eganville, Ontario (Diocese of Pembroke Ontario). Bishop Wingle, you may recall, resigned suddenly, mysteriously and prematurely April 2010. He is now actually Bishop Emeritus.
I had several reports last week advising me that Bishop Wingle ‘said’ Mass on Sunday 11 August 2013 in Golden Lake, Ontario.
According to my sources, the parish priest, Father John Lacey, was on vacation. (Father Lacey is pastor at St. James in Eganville – the Nativity of Our Lord in Golden Lake is a mission parish.)
So, on 11 August 2013 Father Richard Starks showed up at Nativity to say Mass. He was not alone. At the start of Mass Father Starks was accompanied by Bishop Wingle.
Father Starks announced that he was there to replace Father Lacey, but that he himself was now being replaced by Bishop James Wingle! APPLAUSE!!
The bishop and the priest concelebrated.
Bishop Wingle ‘gave’ the homily.
The bishop and a Eucharistic Minister distributed Holy Communion. Father Starks sat on the sidelines.
At the end of Mass Bishop Wingle joked that he was on vacation but Father Starks put him to work delivering the homily.
There was no explanation to the congregation of where the bishop has been or what he has been doing. Nothing. No word either why, three long years ago, he chose to abdicate.
After the recessional Bishop Wingle stood at the entrance to the church shaking hands. A number of enthralled Catholics clustered around him.
So, the word from the bishop himself is that he on vacation. On vacation from what and where we have no idea. That I suppose is still top secret?
Strangely the Bishop opted to assist at the small mission church in Golden Lake rather than at his home parish of St. James in Eganville.
Just to be clear here, there are no reports regarding the Bishop’s 2010 abdication which indicate any untoward and/or illegal activities. The problem is and always has been the bizarre manner in which the Bishop abandoned his flock in Catharine’s and the secrecy and total lack of transparency which surrounded his departure and, later, his current whereabouts.
We are still as much in the dark as we were back in April 2010.
Anyway, as I was putting this together I decided to update the Bishop Wingle page with info from his Bio. How could it have slipped my mind that James Wingle spent five years as a probation officer? In fact, after spending time at the Redemptorist Novitiate, and studying Theology at St. Michael s College and attaining a BA from Western U, young James Wingle spent five full years working as a probation/parole officer . Then James Wingle picked up a Masters degree and was off to St. Augustine’s Seminary. He was ordained 16 April 1977.
I mention this because, as some of you know, I have just recently been puzzling over the fact that the recently charged Father Howard Chabot worked as a probation officer after his ordination. So now out of sheer curiosity I am trying to sort out if by chance Mr. James Wingle and Father Howard Chabot ever worked together as probation officers. This is proving difficult – I don’t have the actual dates when Father Chabot worked as a probation officer, but do know that he was working for Catholic Social Services in the early 70’s. But, does anyone know if James Wingle as a layman, and Father Howrd Chabot as a priest ever worked together as probation officers?
Whether I ever find that out or not, the story for today is that the abdicating bishop has surfaced publicly in his home diocese of Pembroke, which is also the Diocese in which he was ordained and initially served – and all or none the wiser as to why the mysterious abdication.
Enough for now,