rss feed for a newsreader
rss feed for podcasting

Easter IV

Fr. Collins Eulogy

May Crowning Procession

✠ The Bishop’s Corner ✠
May Crowning Sunday dawned cold and wet. Attendance was down, especially for the High Mass and Procession. I think probably the days when the second Sunday of May would see a full church are gone now. For such a holiday, the family and social activities pretty much outdraw the Blessed Mother. Oh, and the organ died, with a great energy surge, but just as our procession was leaving the church, so nobody noticed.

But the rain stopped. The scene from my perspective that overcast morning was sweet. The cloister rang with the bright birdsong of nesting Robins. The charming little children, some led by the hand of a sister, all of them variously intent and devout and proud to honor Our Lady, captured our hearts. The measured and orderly procession, singing the dear hymns of devotion, returned to the brightly lit sanctuary, one great May Altar of white roses and blue. The charming children presented their flowers, a little First Communicant to-be crowned Our Lady, and we all renewed our consecration. A good crowd came at the end of the day, for Benediction and Mass. Monday the man came and repaired the organ. Mother’s Day, 2019.

The next day’s second procession could have seemed penitential, I grant you. But didn’t Our Lady of Fatima ask for sacrifices? We haven’t had so many at the Mass which always precedes the procession, and at its Communion Rail, in many a year. Another beautiful sight. Thus encouraged, we headed out in the Irish “soft rain,” beads in hand. Fr. Cekada was able to join us, and suggested a faster more rhythmic pace as being less fatiguing. I don’t know about that, but it was a fine procession, with its full biblical forty. De Maria numquaam satis. Of Mary, there is never enough.

The next day was busy with preparations for Fr. Collins’ Requiem. Divine Office booklets and handsome holy cards were printed, the complicated Pontifical rubrics decoded and rehearsed. Nine of us, eight priests and a bishop, met first to chant the Divine Office. Then came the Solemn Pontifical Requiem, ably sung as always by our school choir, the sermon and the Absolution with candle bearing clergy at the catafalque. Afterwards we went to lunch, toasted the memory of our departed brother, and renewed or made acquaintance, and passed an agreeable afternoon with some of our fellow priests. Thank you all for your prayers and assistance.

This weekend Fr. McKenna and I traveled to Dallas, Texas for Saturday Confirmation at St. Anthony of Padua chapel. Today I am flying on to Pensacola, Florida to Confirm again, this time at Fr. Francis Miller’s mission. Full details next week. Fr. McKenna has another mission week, and Fr. Cekada a seminary teaching week in Florida. Storms were predicted. We were praying for good weather.

This is a good week to make that extra Mass you promised some time ago, even just to join the children some afternoon for the sweet short May Devotions service a little after 3 PM.

May God’s Mother be your own.
–Bp. Dolan