The Diocesan Curia

The Diocesan Curia consists of those institutions and persons which furnish assistance to the Diocesan Bishop in the governance of the entire Diocese, especially in directing pastoral activity, in providing for the administration of the diocese and in exercising judicial power. It would also include all who participate in the overall administration of the Diocese, especially those who direct diocesan departments such as education, social justice, liturgy, laity and other facets of the local Church’s life. On this website most of these Curial persons, departments or bodies have their own page or link to their specific website otherwise their details appear here.

Vicar General:

The Rev Hugh Pollock VG

Holy Trinity & St George, 33 Blackhall Road, KENDAL, Cumbria, LA9 4BW, Tel: 01539 720063

Vicar General & Diocesan Chancellor:

The Rev Canon Paul Embery VG

The Presbytery, St William & St Bernard, Garstang Rd, Pilling, PR3 6AL


Judicial Vicar:

The Rev Sony Joseph DCL, Tribunal Office, The Pastoral Centre, Balmoral Road, LANCASTER
Tel: 01524 596062

Episcopal Vicars for Religious:

Rev Mgr Canon Francis Slattery, Prot Ap: (Cumbria)
Rev Chris Cousens: (Lancashire)


The Council of Priests (as 1 May 2009)

Constitution, Standing Orders, & Rules of Procedure (Revised by decree of 31 March 1993)
The Council of Priests is a body of priests who assist the Bishop in governing the Diocese.

The 1983 Code of Canon Law mandates that presbyteral councils exist in each diocese “to aid the bishop in the governance of the diocese according to the norm of the law, in order that the pastoral welfare of the portion of the people of God entrusted to him may be promoted as effectively as possible.”

President & Chair: The Bishop

Vice-Chairman: The Rev Dr Robert Billing

Secretary (non-voting):

Ex-Officio Members: Canon Paul Embery VG; Rev Hugh Pollock; Mgr Francis Slattery; Rev Chris Cousens (Episcopal Vicars for Religious); Rev Luiz Ruscillo (Vocations Director),  Canon Peter Hart (Diocesan Financial Administrator), Rev Michael Docherty (Episcopal Vicar for Education & Formation).

Deanery Representatives:

St Peter’s (Lancaster)

Our Lady & St Wilfrid (Preston)

St Kentigern’s (Blackpool)

Sacred Heart (Thornton) Rev Chris Cousens

St John (Kirkham) Rev David Burns

St Mary of Furness (Barrow-in Furness) Canon Paul Embery VG

St Herbert (Carlisle)

Our Lady & St Benedict (West Cumbria)

St Thomas of Canterbury (Kendal) Mgr Francis Slattery


Council of Priests’ Steering Committee: The Bishop (Chair);

The Diocesan Trustees (Clarificatory Note)


Cathedral Chapter (Erected 16 February, 1925)

Provost: The Rev Canon Dunstan Cooper VG;

Chapter Canons: Revv Canons Robert Dewhurst; John Gibson, Alf Hayes; Luiz Ruscillo; John Watson, Paul Embery, Peter Draper, Peter Hart, Adrian Towers, Christopher Loughran.

The Cathedral Chapter in this Diocese currently serves, since Bishop O’Donoghue’s time and renewed by successive diocesan bishops since then, as the College of Consultors.