Wednesday was an experience somewhat beyond words. Now, nearly fifteen months into this new life as a bishop, I had the wonderful opportunity to return to the Archdiocese of my roots and faith, my priesthood from which I was called to be a bishop. I had the rare opportunity to be a co-ordaining bishop of their new auxiliary bishop, Christopher Coyne.
To further enhance the experience, the ordination was held in a parish where I was privileged to be pastor for one year while also serving as vice rector of Bishop Simon Brute College Seminary. As my own ordination to the episcopacy is a bit of a “blurr” it was great to celebrate another ordination…listen to the readings, the prayers, the homily, all with some experience now in the life of a bishop. It was very uplifting…even “moving”.
It was great to be with brother bishops, my former “brother priests” and former parishioners. It also provided a great visit with my former Archbishop, Daniel M. Buechlein, OSB, who provided some great hospitality. As much as anything, it was a real treat to be able to have such a “front and center” seat to pray for Bishop Coyne during his ordination ceremony, and to watch his various reactions.
To be a bishop is a tremendous blessing, responsibility, and privilege. The rite celebrated Wednesday helped to remind me of the basic role of the bishop, which I am still learning how to live and breath. Thank you, Bishop Coyne for your “Yes” and for the opportunity to be with you. Thank you, my former family of Indianapolis, for a wonderful visit, and a great celebration of faith.
God is good! (Photos courtesy of Sean Gallagher, Criterion)