Wednesday, April 6, 2022 @ 4:28 p.m.
The Holy Father Pope Francis has conferred on the Revd Dr Michael Nazir Ali, the title of Honorary Prelate to His Holiness and now has the right to be addressed as “Monsignor”.
Michael Nazir-Ali was born in Pakistan in 1949 and holds both British and Pakistani nationality. He holds numerous academic awards, including from the universities of Karachi, Oxford and Cambridge, as well as the Lambeth Doctor of Divinity. He has taught and researched at several institutions and continues to teach and supervise research. He was ordained an Anglican priest in 1976 and served in England and Pakistan before being consecrated Bishop of Raiwind in 1984. He was General Secretary of the Church Missionary Society (1989-94) before his appointment as Bishop of Rochester in 1994. As such, he entered the House of Lords in 1999 and has been active in the areas of international relations, dialogue between people of different faiths, freedom of expression and speech and advocacy marriage and human dignity at every stage of life. He has also served on numerous public and religious organizations. He resigned as Bishop of Rochester in 2009. Since then he has been Director of OXTRAD: Oxford Center for Training, Research, Advocacy & Dialogue. OXTRAD’s mission is to prepare Christians for ministry in situations where the Church is under pressure and in danger of persecution.
Bishop Nazir Ali was received into full communion with the Catholic Church on 29and September 2021, the feast of St Michael and all the angels. He was ordained to the Catholic priesthood for the personal ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham at Our Lady of the Assumption, rue Warwick on 30and October 2021 by His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster.
Bishop Newton, Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, said: “This is a well deserved honour. Michael has worked for Christian unity throughout his ministry and has supported the Ordinariate, albeit from the outside, since its erection in 2011. Over the years he has been in dialogue with the Catholic Church both through the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. He was a member of the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission and the Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission on Unity and Mission. I am therefore delighted that the Holy See has recognized his enormous contribution to Christian thought over many years.
Upon his appointment, Bishop Nazir Ali said, “It is very generous of the Holy Father to bestow upon me this honor which I hardly deserve. Pray that I will be worthy of it”.
He is the author of numerous books on doctrine, ecumenism, mission and relations with people of other faiths, especially Islam. His hobbies include cricket, hockey, table tennis, reading and writing poetry, and reading mystery novels. Michael has been married to Valerie since 1972 and they have two adult sons