kirkstall abbey

Our Parish Priest

Fr P

Rev Fr. Patrick Anthony Smythe

Fr Pat was born in Harrow on the Hill, Middlesex on 20th March 1943, the younger of two brothers. The family moved to Sheffield in 1947 and Fr Pat was educated by the Sisters of Mercy at Mylnhurst Convent Junior School and at De La Salle Grammar School before going to Ushaw College, Durham to study for the Priesthood. He was ordained by Bishop Gordon Wheeler for the Diocese of Leeds in his home parish of St William of York, Sheffield on 23rd May 1967.

Fr Pat was appointed as Assistant Priest to St Bernard’s Parish, Halifax and to the Chaplaincy of St Thomas More Secondary Modern School (which subsequently became the Halifax Catholic High School and is now called St Catherine’s). In 1970 he was transferred to St Mary’s Parish in Halifax where he was engaged in the establishment of a Deanery Catholic Youth Centre and continued as Chaplain to the High School.

In 1978 Fr Pat was appointed Leeds Diocesan Youth Director and also Chaplain to St Wilfrid’s Catholic High School, Featherstone. The Diocesan Youth Ministry involved him in the establishment of the Diocesan Residential Youth Centre at St Monica’s, Skipton where he led the Youth Retreats team between 1981-86 and acted as Chaplain to Holy Family Catholic High School in Keighley.

Bishop David Konstant appointed Fr Pat as Parish Priest to St Paulinus, Dewsbury in September 1986 where he celebrated his Silver Jubilee and served until September 1993 before moving to St Boniface, High Bentham. While ministering to this parish in the Yorkshire Dales Fr Pat undertook a Master’s Degree in Theology at Leeds University. During this time he became engaged in the international campaign for the liberation of East Timor making several visits to the territory both before and after the eventual achievement of Independence. He continued at the Department of Religious Studies at Leeds University until 2001 when he was awarded a Doctorate for his thesis on the role of the Catholic Church in the issue of East Timor. By this time he had been reappointed as Parish Priest to the community of St Mary’s, Rothwell where he served from September 1998 until August 2006 when Bishop Arthur Roche appointed him to Holy Name – in good time for the celebration of his Ruby Jubilee in May 2007!

On August 15th 2010 Fr Pat was entrusted with the pastoral care of the newly formed Parish of Our Lady of Kirkstall, comprising the former parishes of The Assumption of Our Lady (Spen Lane), Our Lady of Good Counsel (St Mary’s) Horsforth, and The Holy Name of Jesus (Cookridge). Fr Boniface Akpoigbe MSP was appointed as Assistant Priest in this ministry


Fr.Emmanuel Adindu MSP

Fr Emmanuel

My names are Emmanuel Osondu Adindu. I was born during the civil war in Nigeria; this is what informed my middle name (= 'Born to Survive'). I am a fifth born child in a family of eight, five men and three women.
My father died a little early and that posed a great challenge to my upbringing. Early in life I wanted to go to the minor seminary to help me discern my vocation to the Priesthood, but this I could not do because of lack of finances.  After my secondary school, I went to live with a priest as a house boy and cook. After three years of my stay with this Priest, I left him and became a volunteer teacher in my Alma mater.
The major turning point in my life was when I applied to the National Missionary Seminary of St Paul for formation as a Missionary Priest. It was significant in the history of my personal life because of the circumstances that led to my application and secondly, out of the over one thousand (1,000) candidates who applied for consideration, I was among the few (18 candidates) selected from all over the country.
Going to the Spiritual Year house of formation and eventually to the major Seminary was a new dawn in my life. It was a step forward considering my background. It was so sweet and memorable being a senior seminarian. However, challenges were still there both financially and family-wise. My nine years in the senior seminary exposed me more to life and afforded me the opportunity of learning about Nigeria as a multi-cultural Society, and knowing and appreciating people of other ethnic backgrounds.
I was ordained a Priest for the Missions after obtaining a certificate in Philosophy and a degree in theology  (BD) from the Pontifical Urban University Rome on the 7th of July 2001 by Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza of the Archdiocese of Texas, USA. I worked in the Archdiocese of Onitsha in Nigeria as an assistant Priest for two years.  In 2003 I was posted to the Malawi Mission. I worked in this Mission as a Parish Priest for eleven years. While in Malawi. I was privileged to work with people living with HIV/AIDS. I worked to improve the quality of lives of the poor, malnourished and vulnerable children. I also worked to empower economically the local people.
As a person I like to be happy and I like people around me happy too that is why my motto is: 'Gladness of heart is life to everyone; joy is what gives length of days.’ I like singing, it makes me extra happy. I like watching football and I like being good to people. I like taking my time in doing  things. I believe that God favours me a lot.
My coming to the UK is a thing of joy for me and an opportunity to know more. When I tend to compare Malawi and UK I feel there is no basis for comparison.  It’s like moving from one extreme part of the world to another. As a Missionary my target is to be privileged to win at least one Soul for God.


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