Dolan's Titular Church Announced

I know, I know. This may not be the kind of thing that you find interesting, but as one who loves to find a reason to explore parts of Rome I have not visited previously, I take an interest in the title, or deaconry, given to a cardinal at the time they are raised to the purple. (Also, not sure why we say "raised to the purple" seeing as cardinals wear red.) It is because of their status as a titular pastor that cardinals have the right to vote in conclave, preserving the tradition, now symbolic, that the clergy of Rome elect the bishop of Rome.

For the upcoming consistory, there was also the certainty that we would see something genuinely new. Since 1946, when Cardinal Francis Spellman was named titular pastor of SS. Giovanni e Paolo, every Archbishop of New York has been given that same title. Cardinals Cooke, O'Connor and Egan all served as titular pastors of the ancient church, not far from the Colosseum. It is said, although I have never been able to prove it, that Spellman bought the chandeliers from the Waldorf-Astoria ballroom when it underwent renovation, and installed them in the church. O'Connor, was one would expect from an old Navy man, replaced the boiler.

Dolan is the first Archbishop of New York to have a living predecessor, so he cannot be given the title to SS. Giovanni e Paolo. And according to Rocco Palmo, Dolan will given the title to Our Lady of Guadalupe, a church in a largely immigrant neighborhood, which seems especially fitting for an archbishop from NYC. I have never been to that church, but now I have a reason to do so.


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