Monday, December 15, 2008

The Song of Farewell

With the farewell rites underway tomorrow for Cardinal Avery Dulles SJ, earlier today it emerged that Thursday's climactic Mass in St Patrick's Cathedral will be celebrated by the archbishop of New York, Cardinal Edward Egan.

A classmate of Dulles' from the "mega-consistory" of 2001, as papal legate Egan will likewise preach the mid-afternoon liturgy at the Fifth Avenue landmark.

Especially close to the New York Jesuits on the whole, the cardinal's tenderness moved attendees at Dulles' 90th birthday celebration in August as Egan wheeled the theologian around and took his side during the day's liturgy instead of vesting for Mass. As the Vatican's lead theologian (and top American) Cardinal William Levada continues his recovery from a November back surgery here in the States, the nuncio to Washington Archbishop Pietro Sambi will likewise represent the Holy See at the funeral.

As previously noted, the three days of liturgies and lying in-state begin tomorrow afternoon at Fordham's university church, the first two ending with Masses for the Jesuits and the academic community. Those far afield can join in, too: both tomorrow night's Mass of the Holy Name and Wednesday's Mass of the Holy Eucharist will be streamed online courtesy of the Jesuit school's campus ministry -- both begin at 7.30pm Eastern (0030GMT).

As things stand, no broadcast or streaming arrangements for Thursday's liturgy have been indicated.