Eventually he was lured by the media pack to the front of St Christopher's for photographs, but Canberra's new Catholic Archbishop didn't want his first public event to be held at the cathedral.
Instead, Christopher Prowse headed to the Canberra Avenue offices of the charity CatholicCare to meet staff and hold a press conference.
"God loves everybody but he has favourites and they are the poor,'' Bishop Prowse said later.
"So, get to know the poor and where the poor are ministered and then you're going to have a very clear indication of where God is.
"I'm taking my lead also particularly from Pope Francis where he's told us to get out of the office and spend more time on the periphery and on the margins; get to know the poor and let them get to know you.''
The Vatican announced Bishop Prowse's appointment as Archbishop of Canberra and Goulburn on Thursday night.
He has been Bishop of Sale in Victoria since 2009 and will be formally installed as Archbishop on November 19.
Bishop Prowse said he was looking forward to moving to Canberra but would also miss his current diocese.
"I can't be expecting my priests to go to different places if when the time comes for me I don't respond in an equally generous way,'' he said.
Bishop Prowse said one of his first jobs would be to listen to the local Catholic community.
"One of the major mistakes in leadership - whether it be ecclesiastical or any other leadership - is you come in with a bag of agenda and you're just going to apply it in a hammery way. That's not helpful,'' he said.
Bishop Prowse was particularly keen to get to know the archdiocese's rural parishes and the concerns and the needs of their parishioners.
"It's a big rural diocese with a substantial city - Canberra - more or less in the middle of it. So, I'll be doing a lot of travelling to all the communities that I can go to get to know them.''
He joked that he was pleased by the name of Canberra's Catholic cathedral.
His predecessor, Mark Coleridge, was appointed Archbishop of Brisbane last year. Monsignor John Woods has been administrator.