Skip to comments.Lepanto, Bertone e Battesimo, Oh My!
Posted on 10/01/2006 4:58:22 PM PDT by NYer
So the cardinal- archbishop of Boston presided at his first Baptism yesterday in St Peter's. And don't be surprised that the baby's last name was "Kennedy."
No, not those Kennedys. Still, it's a notable coincidence.
Sean O'Malley also met up yesterday with the new Secretary of State at Bertone's temporary residence: St John's Tower in the Vatican Gardens. On a side note, it's looking as if that arrangement's going to be less temporary than hoped....
On the blogosphere's most eminent page, the cardinal noted briefly that he raised the question of "our request for new Auxiliary Bishops" with Bertone -- said request has been held up quite a bit, allegedly on the Roman side of things. (It's a touchy topic with the Bostonians.) Luckily, the new Nepos is now in a better position to help; yesterday, the Pope named him to three dicasteries of which the Secretary of State is traditionally a member: the Congregations for the Oriental Churches, Evangelization of Peoples and, of course, Bishops.
O'Malley took possession of his titular church, Santa Maria della Vittoria, earlier today. Regrettably, the American eminence who repeatedly exclaimed "LEPANTO!" after hearing the assignment at the March consistory could not be in attendance.
Hopefully, the consistory will take place before the Holy Father heads east to Turkey.
This morning, I had the great joy of celebrating a baptism in the baptistry at Saint PeterÂs Basilica. It was the first time that I ever had the privilege to have a baptism there. It was a very moving experienceÂ and at the same time it was a bit like celebrating a baptism in Grand Central Station because there are thousands of tourists walking around inside the Basilica. Logistically, the sacristan and officials had to place some stanchions near the baptismal font so that we could proceed.
IÂm sure that over the course of the last 500 years there have been many children baptized at the huge St. PeterÂs baptismal fontÂ .children of kings and children of peasants, from every nation under heaven.
It was certainly special. However, I believe that any baptism is a great event. It is Christ who is acting through the sacraments and the child or adult who receives baptism is being reborn into GodÂs life. It is very significant.
At JesusÂ baptism in the Jordan, the voice of the Father was heardÂ ÂThis is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased….Â In baptism we become GodÂs beloved children. ItÂs the beginning of our vocation Â a call to holiness, a call to discipleship, a call to be a member of a family, a faith. ItÂs a call to be part of a communal mission, to work to make GodÂs presence more visible, to build a civilization of love where thereÂs greater justice and greater concern for those in need. ItÂs a wonderful event, not only for the family, but also for the entire community of believers.
The child that I baptized is Declan Sean Kennedy, son of Sean and Gina Kennedy. When Sean graduated from Georgetown University, he became a lay missionary, working one year in Samoa and then working with me in the West Indies for two years. During his tenure in the West Indies, he started a shelter for the homeless. We named it ÂBethlehem HouseÂ because in Bethlehem, Jesus, Mary and Joseph were homeless and there was Âno room at the inn.Â Sean did a wonderful job and was a fantastic example to the young people of my Diocese. After he left his three years as a volunteer, he went back to school to study public health. He then went to work for the United Nations and was in Africa for a while.
He and his wife, Gina, came back to the Islands after they were engaged and I married them. It was quite an event because many of their relatives came to the ceremony in the Islands.
Sean and Gina are originally from Utah, which is very interesting Â there are not many Catholics in Utah. Sean said, ÂBeing a Catholic in Utah was like belonging to a very exclusive club.Â Both Sean and Gina work for agencies of the United Nations Â Gina dealing with world hunger and Sean is making strides with agriculturally challenged areas of the world. They have been living here in Rome for a number of years and after many years of praying to have a child, theyÂve been blessed finally with a little baby. I was so pleased when they e-mailed me and asked me if I would have the baptism. I knew that IÂd be coming over here at this time, so it worked out very well. The baby was born a couple months ago.
I suggested that we might try to do the baptism at St. PeterÂs. I thought that would be something that Declan would know his whole life Â that he was baptized there at St. PeterÂs. It would be so wonderful - the fact that we could do it so near to where St. Peter was buriedÂ
for two thousand years, Christian Pilgrims have come here, St. Patrick was sent to evangelize the Irish from here, St. Boniface was sent to evangelize the Germans from here, St. IgnatiusÂ
.every great personality in the ChurchÂs history has come here and prayed and found inspiration in this place.
So to have a baptism here is a very special thingÂ .and not just because of the architecture or the beauty of St. PeterÂs - it was built to be a beautiful place Â in that period of the counter-reformation, the beauty of the Baroque churches was intended to give people a glimpse of GodÂs beauty and of heaven. For us, if there was no church here at all, just the fact that Peter was buried hereÂ and as Jesus said Âupon this rock I will build my Church,Â and indeed the Church is built on the rock of PeterÂs faith, his commitment and his martyrdom. So, it was a very special event.
Sean and Gina were both thrilled. The baptism today was special for me, as well. These are friends and people that I am very pleased to see that God has blessed with a child. I know that they will be very good parents and instill that spirit of service and generosity that has been characteristics of their lives. They are people with a sense of vocation, giving their lives to work for the betterment of humanity.
Ornate St. Peter’s Baptismal Font.
At the Font.
You can see the rather large crowd of people inside St. Peter’s that were attracted to watch the baptism.
Entering St. Peter’s Basilica this morning for the baptism.
I wore my ÂCardinal RedsÂ today because I was in the Basilica of St. Peter. It was a bit embarrassing and a bit amusing to see the ushers Âparting the ÂRed SeaÂÂ through the crowdÂ lol.
This afternoon I went to visit and have a meeting with the new Cardinal Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone. I was able to talk with him about the situation of the Church in Boston and share with him some of my hopes and aspirations for the future of our Archdiocese. We also touched on our request for new Auxiliary Bishops.
I also reminded him that one of our Auxiliaries, Bishop Emilio Simeon AlluÃ¨, is a member of his community, as a Salesian. Cardinal Bertone is quite outgoing and very friendly. He just recently began serving in his new role as Vatican Secretary of State. Previously, over the years when he was Archbishop, one of his great joys was to do a little sports broadcasting for the soccer games in Italy.
As Secretary of State, he serves in a role that one could describe as the ÂVice PresidentÂ of the ChurchÂ .much like our Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia in a Diocese, who administers so much of the life of the Church. Cardinal Bertone is a very important figure in the life of the entire Church. We had a productive and enjoyable visit.
Torre di San Giovanni - Tower of St. John.
It was also very interesting to see where his office is located in the Vatican - in an old tower in the Vatican wall, called Torre di San Giovanni - Tower of St. John. ItÂs a tower that was built many centuries ago with the purpose of protecting the Vatican from invasion. We noticed how the wall has a passageway so that people could have escaped from other parts of the Vatican into that tower.
Passing by parts of the beautiful Vatican Gardens on the way to Torre di San Giovanni.
More of the Vatican Gardens.
View of St. Peter’s Basilica and the city on the way to Torre di San Giovanni.
I am very much looking forward to tomorrowÂs Mass and ceremony at Santa Maria della Vittoria. It will be a very significant moment. The Mass is very ceremonial, but more importantly, it is symbolic of the connection of Boston and BostonÂs Cardinal-Archbishop, with the Diocese of Rome, which is the Diocese of St. Peter - the place where the center of Christianity resides and which is the guarantor of the unity of the Church throughout the world.
I have received a few comments from people who indicated that they are having difficulty finding previous posts Â one may access each dayÂs post by clicking on the corresponding date in the calendar on the right side of the screen.
Until my next postÂ .
I didn't understand a word of that; all this nudging-and-winking is way over my head.
The Archbishop's pictures from the Vatican are beautiful! I'm thinking of getting a "Vatican tour" DVD set with my consignment-sale earnings, if it turns out to be enough :-). The Ignatius Press catalog has "Treasures of the Vatican," or something like that; maybe they'll have a pre-Christmas markdown.
I was most interested in the reaction to someone shouting out LEPANTO!! Rocco doesn't seem to express much of a position either way, though - other than saying that it was a "watershed moment" in Christian/Moslem relations. So what?? Is he saying that he didn't like it, or that he did like it?? A generalization for those who don't know: if you liked the shouted exclamation then you are a conservative, and if you disliked it, you are a liberal. Rocco tends to lean left in all his writings, so I assume he did not approve. But who knows?? I could be wrong.
I too dislike Rocco's "wink wink, nudge nudge" style of writing. He talks about a lot of inside politics from within the Church, but if you don't already know what he is talking about, you are lost (which is where I frequently wind up!!). I wish he would take the time to explain what it all means, in addition to just making obscure comments about things. His inside info is supposedly very good, and I have read in other places that many within the Catholic Church read his blog everyday (and find out things there before they hear it anywhere else, even though they are church "insiders" themselves).
However, I find his blog off-putting because it sometimes contains sanctimonious leftism, and because he seems to write for "insiders" only, and does it in a way the keeps outserds outside. If he is writing for us poor common folk, I don't know why he doesn't explain himself more. That makes him appear to be not only a sanctimonious left-wing Catholic, but an ELITIST sanctimonious left-wing Catholic!!
But that's just me.
And if you think shouting things out at public figures, hoping to make the news, is Tacky, then you might be a Redneck Evangelical Catholic Church Lady. (Please bring a covered dish to the next meeting.)
Great summary of this blogger - sometimes there's an interesting piece of information, but it's hard to winkle it out from the in-crowd rambling.
I liked "outserds." I thought it was deliberate!
I agree. The "I'm so special!" tone is very off-putting.
In North Carolina, we call that "typsy."
a statement about how "humbled" he is by everyone's adoration.
I have trouble getting far enough into these screeds to reach that point. I read the threads, hoping someone will have highlighted the interesting point, if there is one!
Well, Rocco's is one of about 5 Catholic sites I check out each day (the rest are more Conservative), but it is the last one I look at (in case I am too tired, or have better things to do!!). If it just seems to be a bunch of gobbly-gook, like we discussed above, I just skim it, or skip it all together.
I only have time for Free Republic and Townhall. The next generation is rather numerous around here :-).
Well, the good thing about the Conservative Catholic sites is that they don't have THAT much new stuff each day. It's a big Church, but only so much can happen every 24 hours. With Free Republic and Town Hall, they cover all topics, not just the Church, so there can be a LOT to keep up with each day on those two sites alone.
Outserds - yes I thought it was intentional too. One for the Wash. Post word contest (outside nerds).
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