Thursday, July 21, 2005

The Divine Bishop S.

Today, the Prodigal Son returns from Mainland as Larry Silva is ordained as the new bishop of Honolulu. And the Hawaiians are saying, "Aloha. Not soon enough."

I'm not going out on a limb to say that, in my judgment, this is the smartest American appointment in a good while. Thanks card to the prefect of the CDF.

Exhibits here and here.

Despite being vicar general in Oakland, Silva is no stranger to his new diocese, having been born there and making frequent trips back to visit family. The priests already know and love him (which, after the Chainsaw Frank show, counts for more than you'd think), and he can hit the ground running with a broad mandate. But most of all, the read I'm getting is that this guy is a real person, a living, breathing pastor. He's got his head screwed on straight -- which isn't a given for bishops-elect in this (or any) age -- and he's got that "in the Curia but not of the Curia" vibe, a la Joe McFadden. These are all very encouraging signs. Plus, what other bishop prefers to go by a nickname? Richie Lennon, anyone?

I was talking to one of my priest-assistants a few weeks back about Hawaii. This guy is a huge Bette Midler fan, so the conversation went like this:
RP: Imagine, if you were named bishop of Honolulu, you could have Bette Midler sing your installation.

PA: Mr. Rockefeller, please! Mr. Rockefeller, please!
So what better way to pay tribute to the islands than to quote another Bettehead, Mike Myers as his Yenta alter ego, Linda Richman of Coffee Talk:
"Bette Midler. She is like butta -- Land O' Lakes whipped and unsalted. And to think of where she came from, the only Jew in the state of Hawaii. What must that have been like? Did she eat koi at Passover Seder? Did Jack Lord ask her the four questions? 'Baruch atah ahla muka laka hiki'? I ask you, I ask you...."
There was a running joke when a certain bishop was ordained some years back that the ordaining prelate had to put great effort into suppressing his urge to sing "Wind Beneath My Wings." (It was not a widely-held sentiment.) But there might just be an inpromptu serenade today on Oahu.

Knock 'em dead, Larry.



Blogger Laura Gonzalez said...

Plus, what other bishop prefers to go by a nickname?

Our bishop, Daniel, made clear at the very beginning that he wasn't "Bishop Daniel," but "Bishop Walsh." (Much more trad than our previous, shamed, "Bishop Pat.") The priests refer to him as "Danny Walsh" behind his back.

He he.

Laura Gonzalez

21/7/05 13:18  
Blogger Vonshui said...

And can you believe those under-educated bastards at VH1 labeled "From a Distance" one of their awesomely-bad-songs?!

21/7/05 18:23  
Blogger Ichiban Jim said...


21/7/05 19:09  

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