Stanthorpe born Archbishop has died
THE Granite Belt community is in mourning alongside the Catholic world after retired Archbishop, John Bathersby, passed away yesterday.
Archbishop Bathersby was born in Stanthorpe in 1936 to John Thomas, a publican at the Country Club Hotel, and Grace Bathersby.
He completed his primary education at St Joseph's Stanthorpe and his secondary education at Nudgee College In Brisbane.
He was ordained in Stanthorpe parish by Bishop William Brennan on June 30, 1961.
His first seven years as a priest were spent in Goondiwindi before he was sent to Rome for further studies in 1969.
Later, he was appointed Bishop of Cairns in 1986 and later became Archbishop of Brisbane in 1992.
It was a role he held until 2011.
He was one of only five Catholic Archbishops of Brisbane since 1917 and only the second Queenslander appointed to lead the Brisbane church in its 160-year history.
In retirement, he enjoyed a return to the Granite Belt before settling into the Canossa Complex, Oxley, and St Vincent's Aged Care at Carseldine.
"There are many places in the world that are heavenly," he told the congregation at his final mass in 2011.
"One of them is Stanthorpe and the other is my brother Brisbane."
He died at the Wesley Hospital at Auchenflower on March 9, age 83, believed to be the result of a recent stroke.
The Bathersby Centre at St Joseph's Stanthorpe was named in his honour some year's ago.
He is survived by his three sisters; Carmel Mahoney, Sue Nolan and Anne Johnson; his brother Michael Bathersby, and numerous nephews and nieces.
A funeral mass is being planned at the Cathedral of St Stephen in Brisbane.