Our new bishop-designate is wasting no time in surveying his new charge. --Or maybe, dear Bishop D'Arcy is wasting no time in finally passing it on! The morning found the two bishops at the Cathedral in Ft. Wayne, the evening at the Vigil Mass at Notre Dame, and at night, vespers at St. Matthew's Cathedral in South Bend. (Ft. Wayne/South Bend is one of the few dioceses with co-cathedrals)
Yesterday was also the closing day of the Center for Ethics and Culture's 9th Annual Conference (this year entitled "The Summons of Freedom: Virtue, Sacrifice and the Common Good"), which brought the bishops to Notre Dame. Bishop D'Arcy was already scheduled to say the Saturday Vigil Mass in the Basilica for the conference. After the announcement of the bishop was made, the electrifying news quickly spread through conference attendees: Bishop D'Arcy would be bringing Bishop Rhoades!
One of my friends observed, as we were preparing for Mass: "A bishop's announced, and look at how many priests come out of the woodwork." Fr. Hesburgh was present to greet the bishops. Fr. Jenkins, surprisingly, was absent, but sent Fr. McDonald as his representative.
Bishop D'Arcy warmly welcomed not only the conference participants, but also members of NDResponse who had greeted him as he arrived at the Basilica.
At the end of Mass, Bishop Rhoades spoke for a few minutes. He graciously addressed the university, but more specifically the Center for Ethics and Culture (which, it should be noted, lost funding from the university administration earlier this year). He praised the Center, the conference and its participants for being good examples of positive contributors to the Church.
After the Mass, the Bishops stayed around to greet the congregation - again, mostly participants of the Center's conference.
Bishop D'Arcy introduces Sr. Ann Astell of the ND Theology faculty to Bishop Rhoades
Photo: me 11/14/09
Photo: me 11/14/09
On a personal note: Bishop Rhoades was delighted to hear I was from Maryland. He immediately mentioned Mount St. Mary's and his time as rector there - it seems he was quite fond of his time there. I'm glad. I'm sure that experience will be very useful in dealing with Our Lady's University.
And in other news, my friends spent a good part of the day and the closing banquet of the conference trying to figure out what "Kevin" is in Latin.
P.S. Some Articles on the News:
The South Bend Tribune
The Notre Dame Observer
Rhoades - on Whispers in the Loggia