My wife and I went down to the Cathedral-Basilica of St. Augustine on today to celebrate the feast day of the city’s patron saint. The evening’s activities begin with sung Vespers in the Cathedral. The singing of Evening prayer was beautiful and the sounds of the new organ filled the Cathedral. After vespers we walked in procession behind the cross down the old cobblestone streets until we got to the Bishop Robert J. Baker Parish Center.
The guest speaker this year was Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan, head of the Diocese of Milwaukee. Dolan was installed as the 10th bishop of Milwaukee on Aug. 28, 2002, almost exactly a year ago. Archbishop Dolan started his speech by noting Bishop Sheens advice “Have a good start, a good ending, and make sure they are not to far apart. Even though he is an historian he did not talk about the person of St. Augustine, but based his speech on probably his most famous words. “Our hearts our restless until they rest in you.” The focus throughout remained on our final end, on eternity. He wove personal stories along with other events to illustrate this focus. He is a powerful speaker and had the audiences rapt attention throughout his 45 minute speech.
He related one story about when he went to Milwaukee to the Cathedral he asked to see the crypt. The rector asked him if he wanted to pray in front of the bodies of the previous Archbishops? He replied that he wanted to see where he would be buried. He talked about Christopher Dawson, English historian and convert to Catholicism in 1914, who had written about how in medieval times the Church and the grave yard were always next to each other so that everyday was also a lecture on our final ends. I cant give his speech in justice in my reporting of it, but I was certainly impressed by both his delivery and coherence on the topic of the point of life and our final end.
Now before Karen Marie Knapp of From the Anchor Hold thinks that I might be coming down with episcopal-envy for her Bishop, sorry but I am also duly impressed with my own Bishop, Victor Galeone. Bishop Galeone managed to attend Bishop Dolan’s speech even though he had been at the installation of the new Palm Beach Bishop Gerald Barbarito today
Don’t worry, enjoy him all you want — just don’t start conspiring to steal him away!
I know you wouldn’t, but it is something that gives me wonder, that my diocese is blessed with three — count them, three! — pious and diligent and devoted bishops, when so many people in so many places, according to the blogworld at least, would give arm, leg, and firstborn to have just one of that kind.
And, of Milwaukee’s ten archbishops, two (Stritch and Meyer) have been stolen away to other places….