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Thursday, September 1, 2011

BREAKING NEWS! This just in... [Updated 11:05 a.m. EDT]

Fr. Leo Shea, Chief Coordinator for All Centenary Celebrations Here at the Center or St. Patrick's Cathedral, has announced that the 30' Centenary banner, so rudely blown off our tower by Hurricane Irene, will, in fact, be rehung. Mother Nature can't rain on our parade.

Now, if we can just get the choir to sing "Nearer, My God, To Thee," the Titanic symbolism would be complete. Of course, with the impending departure of Ms. Lucille Naughton as our most excellent choir director after many years of very fine service (she actually was director when I was ordained in 1978!) and having as yet to hire a replacement, the choir might be at a loss to sing anything.

On a totally unrelated note (Get it? Note = music), I have heard third-hand that I may be able to view a video of last Tuesday's gathering, which I am wont to do although it may put me in the awkward and unfamiliar position of having to actually know what I'm talking about.

Overheard at the outdoor breakfast table where a Maryknoller was about to kill one of the annoying hornets that buzz our al fresco dining this time of year:

"Don't kill it! You must show compassion to all sentient beings!"

"Yeah? Well that eliminates most guys living here."

Speaking of which (my segues are not intended to make sense) Mr. Bob Short, former MLM currently working in MEPD on all things Centenary related, reports that after careful inquiry among the People of God, he found there is indeed a Time Capsule in our cornerstone and he has located a list of its contents. I will post these once I get a list from him. No word yet on whether we are actually planning on cracking open our cornerstone to retrieve those items, add more from this year, and rebury for another 50 years, at which time the owners of the Chinese Casino and Buffet who will occupy this place can decide what to do with it.

******

This was emailed to me by Bob Short:
Time Capsule (Corner Stone)
 
Ellen Pierce sent me the MARYKNOLL CENTER DIARY AND NEWS NOTES from October of 1953.  Two paragraphs by Father Edward A. McGurkin within those Notes (I have not altered the text) say:
 
A Chi Rho is cut on one side of the stone.  On front is inscribed “A.D. 1953.”  All this went into the stone before it was sealed:  the certificate of identification, a picture of Pope Pius XII, a photo of Bishop James Anthony Walsh and a photo of Father Price, various souvenirs submitted by Mother Mary Joseph, a copy of our Constitutions, a copy of “The Early Days of Maryknoll,” address list of the Priests and Brothers, our basic seniority list, the Maryknoll Sisters’ address list, the Cloister pamphlet “God So Loved the World,” copies of The Field Afar, plaque and medal of Our Lady of Maryknoll, copy of the Maryknoll Fathers Prayer Book, memorial cards of Fathers and Brothers, and that’s not all; just wait while we start a new paragraph here.
 
Did you hear about Father Joe Donovan’s wealthy friend who made a pile of dough while working in a Pittsburgh bakery?  To let future generations know what we have endured, it was suggested that we toss into the cornerstone some of Father Donny’s cornballs.  Another idea was to toss in Father Donny.  Period.  Now here’s the rest of the pile that went into the stone:  Acts and Motions of the three General Chapters, a selection of Council Decrees, U.S.A. coins of 1953, a copy of the New York Times of Oct. 3, 1953, cancelled stamps, promotional folders, the Personnel and Statistical Report of 1946, scholastic catalogues of the Seminary, Glen Ellyn, Lakewood and the Venard, this year’s roster of all our training houses, the September Council Bulletin, the October Diary Digest and the Center News Notes for August 1953.  It looks as if Father Dietz just about cleaned out the bottom drawer of his desk.
 
Also referenced in an early paragraph was the following: 
 
The testimonial of blessing, which was sealed later in the cornerstone, concluded with these lines from St. Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians.  “You are citizens with the Saints and members of God’s household, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets with Christ Jesus Himself as the Chief Cornerstone in Whom the whole structure is closely fitted together and grows into a temple holy in the Lord: in Him you too are being built together into a dwelling place for God in the spirit.”
 
Bob

[Blogger's note: It's nice to see Bishop McGurkin also displayed a droll sense of humor. The tradition lives on!]

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