Pentecost XVII

✠ The Bishop’s Corner ✠
Joys and sorrows come these busy September days, not single file but in a crowd which seems to belie the promise of the calm quiet dawn, mist rising from the grass, young deer feeding in the distance. Autumn mornings.

If we start the day with prayer, all will be well, even should this day open to the day of eternity. Another faithful usher has been called to do service before God. Mike Briggs died suddenly Thursday night. A quiet man, you could count on him for seemingly countless years watching at the doors, praying, helping and being faithful. May Heaven’s doors open to him.

One of our loyal 5:45 part-time ushers, Ralph Otis, is dying of cancer, and we pray for him, as for a man who fell away a long time ago, and lies silent and intubated in the ICU. We pray for him, too, to have a good death.

The first anniversary of Fr. Cekada’s death was duly marked on September 11 with Solemn Mass, the beautiful music he would have loved, a nice social breakfast, and a visit to his grave at St. Stephen’s Cemetery to pray the Rosary. It was a good attendance throughout, and I noted all of the young people, fittingly, who rendered his memory this homage, and his soul this help. It was a quiet, peaceful and somehow very somber way to mark the day.

All of last week the seminarians were on retreat as they prepared for Subdiaconate. Yesterday’s long and so impressive ceremony of ordination to the first Major Order is also somewhat of a landmark. Since I’ve been a bishop, since Bishop Sanborn started his seminary, ordinations have come singly, one at a time. But for the first time, and in the midst of grief and revolution, Almighty God has blessed us and our apostolate here at St. Gertrude the Great with the vocation of four young men in yesterday’s Pontifical Mass. May He bless them, and us, with perseverance. May He reward Bishop Sanborn and his priest professors for their dedicated service. Your interest, prayers, and support are so much appreciated.

Fr. Rodrigo da Silva is waiting to finish quarantine in Mexico City and making his retreat for Consecration. The Consecration of a Bishop is perhaps the richest and rarest of ceremonies. We pray it will help to ensure the Apostolic Succession in our midst, and for our faithful worldwide. You are invited to this historic ceremony on Wednesday, September 29, Michaelmas, at 10:00 AM. A dinner, of course, follows.

It’s nice to see so many bright and devout young children in our school this September. They sing now at the 11:25 daily High Mass on school days. It is nice as well to be giving our traditional blessings. Today we honor our Sorrowful Mother and bless our sick. Next Sunday we bless and dedicate our children to their Guardian Angel. And…after that, Rosary Sunday. At Breakfast, we will hear about the life of the new bishop.

Persevere with us in prayer, especially the prayer of prayers, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Joys will be doubled, and sorrows find their proper solace. The mysteries of the Rosary meld with those of the Mass, and life. “Through the Virgin Mother, may God grant you peace and salvation.”

– Bishop Dolan