Bishop of Waterford and Lismore Dr William Lee (71) has confirmed he is stepping down from his ministry due to ill-health following the acceptance of his resignation by Pope Francis.
Bishop Lee confirmed on Tuesday he had been diagnosed with a serious illness and was under medical care since July 2011.
â€œEven though I found the time since diagnosis quite demanding, I had hoped that I would be able to continue in office and looked forward to doing so. Now, my doctors have advised otherwise,â€ he said in a statement.
â€œAccordingly, I have in the past few weeks submitted my letter of resignation as Bishop of Waterford and Lismore to Pope Francis. The Holy Father has considered my request and graciously accepted my resignation.â€
A native of Newport in Co Tipperary, Bishop Lee was ordained a priest in 1966 for the Diocese of Cashel and Emly, and later served as President of St Patrickâ€™s College in Thurles before being ordained Bishop of Waterford and Lismore in 1993.
Bishop Lee said it was with â€œreluctance and sadnessâ€ that he had come to the decision to retire, Independent TD Mattie McGrath said Bishop William Lee had fulfilled his role with quiet dignity and grace: