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Mass, Basilica of the Sacred Heart, Notre Dame, Indiana, USA
Ordination Mass, Basilica
of the Sacred Heart, Notre Dame, Indiana, USA. The Shipmate
whom we know as Hart and his fellow seminarian Patrick, who
had been ordained to the diaconate several months previous,
were being ordained to the priesthood today.
of Fort Wayne-South Bend.
A classic cathedral in size and shape, profusely gilded and
ornamented, with 116 stained glass windows (1200 panels of glass).
This is the tallest university chapel in the United States,
and mother church of the Congregation of Holy Cross (which founded
and operates the University of Notre Dame).
From their website: The Basilica "is a place of worship
and prayer for students, faculty, staff and alumni, as well
as for regular worshipers, pilgrims and countless visitors."
The Basilica (but not any other campus chapel) is available
for the baptism of family members of students, alumni and faculty
of the University, and it is also a popular venue for weddings.
The Basilica and the museum that is a part of it are also open
for tours at those times when liturgical functions are not taking
The Notre Dame campus is a bit isolated, a residential university
with a strong community tradition. As an example, the dormitory
system integrates all four academic years in housing and dining.
The campus is green, leafy, and football-oriented.
Presiding: the Most Revd Kevin C. Rhoades, Bishop of Fort Wayne-South
Bend. Concelebrating with the bishop were over one hundred priests.
The Revd Tom O’Hara, CSC, superior of the United States
Province of the Congregation of Holy Cross, presented the candidates
The date & time:
April 26, 2014, 2.00pm.
What was the name of the service?
Liturgy of Ordination to the Presbyterate.
How full was the building?
Did anyone welcome you personally?
We were running late and Hart had already ceased greeting people
in order to vest for the ceremony. Hart's father and sisters
greeted us as we arrived at Hart's reserved seats.
Was your pew comfortable?
Well-shaped wooden pews with kneelers; comfortable enough.
How would you describe the pre-service
Quiet, with well-organized bustling about that suggested major preparations. Some talking, a few children, but otherwise an air of quiet expectation.
What were the exact opening words of the
"Good morning and welcome to the Basilica of the Sacred Heart."
What books did the congregation use during the
Only a specially prepared bulletin of 16 pages.
What musical instruments were played?
Organ, guitar, bongo drums, and the Notre Dame Folk Choir, who
have a unique musical sound and a broad repertoire.
Did anything distract
The gilding and ornamentation the Basilica is beautiful
and easily distracting.
Was the worship stiff-upper-lip,
happy clappy, or what?
Ordination in the mother church of the order operating the premier
Catholic university in the United States is going to be about
as far up the candle as Catholic tradition can make it! Hart
and Patrick were vested as deacons up until the moment of consecration
itself, at which time they exchanged their deacons' stoles for
priests' stoles and chasubles. Not only the bishop, but also
all priests present, laid hands on Hart's and Patrick's heads,
symbolizing the passing down of the priesthood from the apostles.
After receiving the chalice and paten, Hart and Patrick joined
the bishop and other concelebrating priests at the beginning
of the eucharistic prayer. You may view the video
of the ceremony on the Holy Cross website.
Exactly how long was the sermon?
On a scale of 1-10, how good was the preacher?
10 Well-structured, well-paced; clear and understandable.
Bishop Rhoades is an articulate and personable bishop, and apparently
very popular and well-respected among the seminarians.
In a nutshell, what was
the sermon about?
It is fitting that the sacrament of Holy Orders be conferred
at Eastertide, as the risen Christ is is the crowning truth
of Christianity. As St Paul emphasized in 2 Corinthians 4:5:
"We do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord."
These two new priests will preach Christ Jesus to the world
in a multitude of ways not just via the sacraments but
also in their service. They will learn from the example of Blessed
Basil Moreau, founder of the order of Holy Cross, who loved
Jesus and his gospel and considered it an honor to renew the
presence of Jesus every day on the altar. If they love Christ
and his Church with a passion, they will serve God's people
Which part of the service
was like being in heaven?
The choir were simply as fantastic as you would expect. And
the sacrament of Holy Orders is probably an act of the most
complete dedication possible in our society. The most poignant
moment of all was at the final blessing, when the bishop, after
giving his blessing, removed his mitre and knelt before the
two new priests to receive their blessing.
And which part was like being in... er... the other place?
Navigating and parking on the Notre Dame campus (you'd think
we would know these things after being here before)!
What happened when you
hung around after the service looking lost?
We stayed around taking pictures for almost a half hour: The
new ordinands with their families, with the bishop, with Father
Theodore M. Hesburgh, CSC, the oldest member of the community
it was a continuation of the celebration.
How would you describe
the after-service coffee?
Well, after about two hours of reception spread out over three
floors at the main university building, followed by a two-hour
banquet at the Moreau Seminary, followed by a party in the basement
we slunk away defeated by food without attending the
party that started after all the other parties had wound down.
Bishop Rhoades was heard to remark that he himself was not a
Holy Cross priest, but that if they always partied like this
he'd consider joining!
How would you feel about
making this church your regular (where 10 = ecstatic, 0 = terminal)?
10 Because it was wonderful, but unfortunately not practical.
Did the service make you feel glad to be a
Definitely! And we want to wish Hart and Patrick long and satisfying
careers in their chosen calling.
What one thing will you remember about all this in seven days' time?
I don't think we'll forget a single moment of it! But if we
had to choose: the testimonies presented in support of why Hart
and Patrick would make good priests; the beautiful music; and
the bishop kneeling to receive the first blessing from the two
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