Sunday, September 04, 2005

The Best of Philly

OK, so I'm a little late to the game, but I just came across a copy of last month's edition of Philadelphia magazine. Good natives know that the August edition is the annual "Best of Philly" awards for everything from dog pedicures to rice pudding (and this year's winner of the latter is a certain Vaticanologist's frequent haunt).

"Best of" has introduced a bevy of new accolades this year, and one of them is of particular interest to this audience. Anyone coming to town in the near future would be well-advised to keep it in mind. Congrats to the Capuchins....
Best People Who Can Save Your Soul: The Franciscans of St. John the Evangelist

Their midday services are jammed with Center City office dwellers, and for good reason: They actually smile when they talk about God.
Such is the state of Philadelphia Catholicism....

And, in related good news, a tip of the cappello to one of our diaspora now across the Delaware: Joe Galante, bishop of Camden and a veteran of the Congregation for Religious in Rome.

Galante's return from Dallas as the first Philadelphian to head our neighbor-diocese to the east was received with excitement last year. And to boot, the good bishop has unwittingly taken on an added charge to his already-sizable workload: showing his hometown how to do church right -- and from zero-base, no less. Seeing the world beyond has served Galante well; he still has a flock of fans in the press corps from the sex abuse crucible.

Thanks to his smarts, savvy and pastoral solicitude, Galante re-emphasized this week that Philly's big loss is Camden's big gain. Again.



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