Hundreds of the St. Louis Faithful gathered at the Cathedral Basilica today at 2pm for the Installation Mass of the 10th Archbishop of St. Louis. Justin Cardinal Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, installed Archbishop Robert James Carlson as Pastor of the Local Church of St. Louis, in the Glorious backdrop of one of the most dynamic structures in all the United States of America. St. Louisans are truly blessed to have such a wonderful Cathedral to worship in.
The readings chosen by the 10th Shepherd were those of a true Evangelist, who understands that the Holy Spirit is truly alive in the Church, Who guides Her, and will guide him in his Pastoral Mission.
Hundreds of local Priests and Deacons as well as the lay faithful in the area gathered to welcome Archbishop Carlson, along with Justin Cardinal Rigali of Philadelphia, Francis Cardinal George from Chicago and numerous other Archbishops and Bishops from around the Country, including Bishop Baker of Birmingham and Archbishop Chaput of the Denver Archdiocese. Among the many community and religious leaders in attendance was the Honorable Mayor of St. Louis, Francis Slay.
During his Homily, the new Archbishop left not doubt in the mind of those who were in attendance that he will never give up the fight "for life issues", to which he received a thunderous round of applause.
In my humble opinion, this man has the heart of a Lion, and the Pastoral skills of a wonderful Priest, who will not over react on an issue, and chooses to handle personal issues in a Pastoral, one on one situation with people or groups.
It seems as if the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI has chosen a truly wise man to Shepherd this Archdiocese containing almost a half million Roman Catholics.
I am also very impressed with the way the Archdiocese of St. Louis has truly embraced technology in it's live streaming of the Installation Ceremony as well as Twittering and putting some outstanding pictures on the website for the local Catholic Newspaper the St. Louis Review, to which I am certain you will enjoy. Kudos to the Archdiocese and the Review as well.
What a wonderful sight it was, to see two Giants of the Catholic Church in America, together in our Cathedral, Archbishop Cardinal Justin Rigali of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Prefect for the Apostolic Signatura and Archbishop Emeritus, Archbishop Raymond L. Burke. These two men continue to fight for the Right to Life in our world as well as stand up for the Truth as it continues to be proclaimed by the Church. They are a true inspiration for Christians around the world to stand up for what Jesus taught, in loving your brother and sister as He Loved the Church.
Since June of 2008, the Archdiocese has been led by Bishop Robert Hermann, as the Archdiocesan Administrator and has done a phenomenal job. So much work that needed to be continued by His Excellency, Archbishop Raymond L. Burke, was continued as it could be and the Archdiocese did not miss a beat. Our deepest thanks and gratitude and mostly our prayers go out to His Excellency Hermann for his dynamic leadership.
Catholic St. Louisans can continue to be proud in who we are, and what we have, because prayers have truly been answered in giving us a great new Shepherd to guide Mother Church here in St. Louis, Missouri. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, Pray for us.