Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Local Connections

     There were a number of "pointed hats" (bishops/abbots) with local ties in attendance at Bishop Malesic's Ordination on Monday.

     First of all, Archbishop Chaput began his homily at the Ordination with reference and gratitude for his ties with the Greensburg Diocese.  He was ordained as a priest in Kansas by the late Cyril J. Vogel, the Bishop of Salina, Kansas some forty-five years ago.  Bishop Vogel was a priest of our diocese who was consecrated (in those days it was a consecration) in Blessed Sacrament Cathedral before going to Kansas.  I was a young high school seminarian when I attended his consecration.  (Somewhere in my things I have a few black and white photos from outside the Cathedral).  The Archbishop, who is a Capuchin Franciscan, also remembered that long before his time, the Abbot of Saint Vincent encouraged the Franciscans to make the move to Kansas in order to minister to the faithful in that part of the country.

     Standing outside of the Cathedral this past Monday were two local boys who made good: Archabbot Douglas Nowicki, the Abbot of Saint Vincent Archabbey for the past twenty-five years and a native of South Greensburg with roots in Everson (on the right)... and Bishop Lawrence Persico, a priest of our diocese and native of Monessen before being named the Bishop of Erie (on the left).

     Also in attendance and recognized in his remarks by Bishop Malesic, was Bishop Gregory Mansour.  Bishop Mansour, before being named Bishop of the Eparchy of Saint Maron in Brooklyn, New York in 2004, served for many years as pastor of the Maronite Rite Catholic parish of Saint George in Uniontown, and often as a young priest attended our gatherings and is well known to our priests.  It was good to see him again.
     There were two others who have ties to the area that, I understand, wanted to be present but could not.  One is Cardinal Adam Maida, retired Archbishop of Detroit, who was a priest of Pittsburgh and was born in Vandergrift in our Diocese.  His plans changed and he could not attend.  And the other is Archbishop Joseph DeAndrea (seen below with our Holy Father), whose health prevented him from travelling from Rome.  The Archbishop, originally from Italy, was a priest of our Diocese for many years before entering the Vatican Diplomatic Corps.  He is now retired and is a Canon at Saint Peter's Basilica with residence in Vatican City.  He had wanted to be present to join in the festivities.
     We are grateful to all of the bishops for joining us on this wonderful occasion.

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