Saturday, June 17, 2006

"I've Really Fallen In Love With This Crowd": Installation Week in DC

At noon tomorrow, the handover begins in Washington when Cardinal Theodore McCarrick celebrates his farewell Mass in the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. And, of course, you know about the following meal.

As further proof of the widespread secular interest in All Things Ted, AP did a story on the cardinal's retirement plans:
One of the most visible leaders in the U.S. Catholic Church is promising to continue speaking out on behalf of the poor, as well as issues such as immigration and family values.

McCarrick also said he will spend time traveling. He is scheduled to visit Rome at least three times between now and November, as well as Kazakhstan, Argentina, Canada, Montenegro and Moscow....

"I've really fallen in love with this crowd, and they've been my family," McCarrick said, adding that he'll miss the crabs and oysters he often ate on visits to parishes near the Chesapeake Bay.
The Moscow trip -- which runs from 2-4 July -- is as part of a Vatican delegation to the Orthodox Patriarchate there as the Russians take the rotating presidency of the G8. An Italian media report said that the six-cardinal delegation will meet with Alexei II in the hope of smoothing the path for an eventual encounter between Pope and Patriarch.

On Thursday, Donald Wuerl will be installed as Washington's fifth archbishop at a star-studded Basilica liturgy witnessed by over 2,500 guests and 80 prelates from around the world. The ceremony begins at 2pm local time and, of course, you can expect floor-to-ceiling coverage on these pages.

Four days later, ostensibly with his predecessor in tow, Wuerl leaves for Rome to receive the pallium at the hands of the Pope. The two other Americans named to lead archdioceses in the past year -- Archbishops George Niederauer of San Francisco and Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston -- will also receive the fabled metropolitan insignia at the Vatican festivities which mark the solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul.

AP/Reed Saxon