Thursday, May 18, 2006

Speaking of Raleigh....

So I'm told that I've got "fans" in eastern North Carolina. A big hey there and hello to anyone to whom that might apply.

The News and Observer ran a piece last weekend on the anxiety surrounding the succession to Bishop F. Joseph Gossman, the longest-serving ordinary in the United States. Gossman turned 75 in March, 2005.

Each morning after Mass has been celebrated, the Rev. Donald Staib steps into his office, turns on his computer and clicks to a popular Web site to check whether Pope Benedict XVI has made any new appointments.

I wonder what that "popular web site" could be....

He is looking for one appointment in particular: a bishop to lead the Diocese of Raleigh.

It has been more than a year since Raleigh Bishop F. Joseph Gossman submitted his letter of resignation to Rome, as required by all bishops who turn 75. Last month, Gossman celebrated his 76th birthday, and still the pope has not named his successor.

Staib, the pastor of St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church in Apex, described the mood of fellow priests as "antsy."

"We know it's going to happen," Staib said. "The date keeps changing."

Fret not, Raleigh -- your day is coming. Feel free to drop me a line and compare notes.