A 53-year-old Dubliner has become the first non-Cork born priest to be ordained bishop of the diocese in more than 300 years.

Fr Fintan Gavin, from Marino in Dublin, was ordained bishop of the Diocese of Cork and Ross in a ceremony at the city's North Cathedral this afternoon.

The diocese is the third largest Catholic diocese in the country.

It was the first ordination of a Catholic bishop in Cork since 1984 when Bishop John Buckley was ordained Auxiliary Bishop.

With a Catholic population of around 285,000 across 68 parishes, it stretches from Sherkin Island in the west of the county, to the urban parishes of Cork City, with some 80 priests in active ministry.

Around 1,200 attended the ceremony, among them 110 priests including the Archbishop of Dublin Dr Diarmuid Martin and the Papal Nuncio to Ireland Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo.

Speaking ahead of the ceremony, the bishop-elect said that he knows he faces challenges but added: "I am ready to hit the ground running and to take on the mandate of renewal."

The Gospel Choir in Our Lady of Victories parish, Ballymun was among a number of choirs including the Cork Deaf Community Choir to take part in the two-hour ceremony.

The ceremony was broadcast live online for the first time, and wias also shown on a large screen in St Patrick's Cathedral in Skibbereen.

Fr Fintan was Chancellor in the Archdiocese of Dublin and parish chaplain in Our Lady of Victories, up to his appointment to the Diocese of Cork and Ross.

Church must apologise again

The newly appointed bishop said the Church needs to reach out and apologise once again to those who have lost their faith or who are struggling because of the abuse carried out in the name of the Church.

Speaking this afternoon, Bishop Fintan Gavin said the Church needs to "stretch out a hand of dialogue and listening so that their voices are heard - so that we can apologise once again and learn from the awful things" that were allowed to happen.

"We can never allow this to happen again."

The bishop made his comments during his ordination ceremony, attended by more than 1,200 people.

In a spirit of ecumenicalism, the bells of the Church of Ireland Cathedral in Cork city rang out to welcome the ordination of the city's new Catholic bishop.

He will now oversee the third largest Catholic diocese in the country.

In Skibbereen, more than 850 gathered in St Patrick's Cathedral to watch the ordination being relayed live on a large screen.

The ceremony was also carried online for the first time.

Appointed in April by Pope Francis to succeed Bishop John Buckley, the Dubliner was chancellor in the Archdiocese of Dublin and parish chaplain at Our Lady of Victories, Ballymun Road.

Speaking at the beginning of the ceremony, Emeritus Bishop of Cork and Ross Dr John Buckley said it was an honour for him to ordain his successor.

Bishop Gavin also told the gathering that the Church has to find new ways of dealing with the challenges confronting it today.

It needs to encourage more vocations to the priesthood and to reach out to those who have lost their faith or are struggling.

Bishop Gavin's parents as well as his six siblings were among those who attended the ceremony.