Tuesday, June 12, 2007

The long black line…is now drawn in purple!

It is always a great thing to see fellow Overbrook graduates receive new appointments from the Apostolic See. Archbishop-designate Joseph E.Kurtz is the latest of Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary graduates to move to a new position. He was appointed this morning as the Archbishop of Louisville. That ends his tenure as Bishop of Knoxville, TN as of the time of the papal appointment. What is really very interesting is that the Archdiocese of Louisville was formerly the Diocese of Bardstown which was erected along with Philadelphia, New York and Boston in 1808. Uniquely enough, the current Titular Bishop of Bardstown is Most Rev. Daniel E.Thomas D.D.,V.G., auxiliary Bishop of Philadelphia, and another Overbrook grad. Even more striking is that Louisville is no stranger to an Archbishop's guidance by another Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary graduate, Archbishop Thomas McDonough Class of 1938 from the Brook.

The Archbishop-designate hails from Mahanoy City in Pennsylvania which is now part of the Diocese of Allentown. The city was part of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia prior to Allentown's split in 1961. The most I know about Mahanoy City is that the pseudo-episcopal chairs and furniture that grace the entrance on the lower-side of Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary were donated by a parish in Mahanoy City. I also know the city also from having visited a couple of times when the guys from Allentown used to take the stagecoach to get to and from Overbrook.

Just a reminder as well...Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary is the seminary for the Diocese of Allentown. It became theirs with the proclamation of the Allentown diocese in 1961, and the guys from upstate are true parts of the family. They don't come as visitors to the legendary institution but as equal residents to the halls of St.Charles.

Other than the couple of historical factors that I have briefly pointed out, my purpose is once again congratulatory to Archbishop Kurtz. I always enjoy the gossip that flows around the appointments of new Bishops and Archbishops. Especially when I have had the privilege to know so many of these exceptional men. Once again another grad from Overbrook is tapped to serve in a very visible and important position. The long black line from 1832 continues to be drawn….now in bishop's purpleJ.