Hamilton Bishop Stephen Lowe expressed sadness over the passing away of Msgr Michael Browne, brother of Bishop Emeritus of Hamilton, Bishop Denis Browne. Msgr Browne was 85.
“The Lord has called Michael home at 10.20pm. May he know the fullness of God’s love,” Bishop Denis said in a text message to Bishop Lowe on March 3, 2020.
Msgr Browne’s roles in Hamilton diocese included being vicar for administration, Clergy Trust Fund secretary, treasurer of the CTF and Medicare Fund, member of the DFC, confessor for the Tyburn community, member of the Priest Council and College of Consultors, member of the Appointments Committee, Dean of the Hamilton North Deanery, convenor of the Boundaries Commission – being a sub-committee of the Priest Council – and chancellor for diocese.
He retired in 2013, residing first in Papamoa and then moving to Auckland.
Msgr Browne was ordained as a priest in 1959 by Archbishop James Liston, having been trained at Holy Name Seminary, Christchurch and Holy Cross College, Mosgiel.
He was assistant parish priest in Onehunga (1959-1971) and Tauranga (1971-1975). He was then assigned as parish priest of Tokoroa (1975-1981), Gisborne (1981-1987), Matamata (1987-1997), Fairfield (1998-2002), Fairfield and Te Rapa (2002- 2006) and Tauranga (2007-2012).
A requiem Mass was celebrated at the Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary on March 6, followed by burial at the Ohaupo Catholic Cemetery.