CONGRATULATIONS, +BP. SCHARFENBERGER, BISHOP OF THE ALBANY DIOCESE!
Today I was able to witness to Apostolic Succession.
I was in attendance for the ordination and installation of the 10th Bishop of the Diocese of Albany. What an amazingly inspiring event!
I will post some photos below with captions, and then will give my views about the new Bishop as well as the ceremony as a whole.
(Bishops processing into the Cathedral)
(Cardinal Dolan makes a jubilant entrance)
(The Apostolic Nuncio reads the Apostolic Letter and Mandate)
(Presentation and Promise of the Bishop-Elect)
(Imposition of Hands by all present Bishops)
(Even Eastern ones!)
(The Book of the Gospels is held over the Bishop-Elect)
(Hugging fellow Bishops)
(Blessing of the Congregation following Communion)
My Impression of the Ceremony:
I am totally blown away by the beauty of this Rite. This was absolutely amazing! I'll give you some highlights and low-lights, and my hopes for the Diocese as we get our new Bishop...
- The choir was AMAZING, and the musical selections I thought were very nice and appropriate. They threw in some Latin (Veni Creator Spiritus and the Agnus Dei), and there was no carnival music. That was a plus.
- There were a LOT of priests and Bishops who showed up. I was very impressed! Bishops from other dioceses came (from Passaic, Brooklyn [Scharfenberger's home diocese], Stamford, Rochester, Hartford, Syracuse, Portland, Rockville Centre, Providence, Buffalo, Ogdensburg, Manchester, Springfield, and Scranton Dioceses). It was so moving to see the huge procession of deacons, priests, and Bishops.
- There weren't any clowns, liturgical dancers, or "womenpriests." Deo gratias.
- I love Cardinal Dolan, and his happy, joyful presence really made a great impact on the Ceremony
- +Bp Scharfenberger has a great attitude, is humble, and has a very nice presence about him.
- I was a bit surprised by our new Bishop's manner during the Eucharistic Prayer. Perhaps he was just so overjoyed that he couldn't hold it in. But I also am very accustomed to the Extraordinary Form, and the way my Spiritual Director says the Novus Ordo (Extremely Reverently)... So anything less seems irreverent to me... Just my view.
- For some reason, a bunch of Protestants were invited... Protestant female ministers in rainbow stoles and ministers in weird collars were there and were in procession. I guess it's for ecumenical reasons. It's kind of nice that they came to support +Bp. Scharfenberger, but still....
- ... That's it.
My views on the new Bishop thus far:
I think he's great! He's exactly what this Diocese needs. Not too crazy orthodox (that would scare people right out of Catholicism, especially in this Diocese...) and not liberal either. A good balance to start changing things around.
He's been open to the celebration of the Extraordinary Form (He used to allow his parish in Brooklyn to be used for the EF), and he "liked" the FaceBook page for the Extraordinary Form in the Albany Diocese. GOOD SIGNS that he will act favorably for the promotion of the EF in our Diocese!
Also, he has approved (within a matter of 5 minutes) my pastor/SD's request to begin Perpetual Adoration!
Let's talk credentials. +Bp. Scharfenberger has an advanced graduate degree (summa cum laude!) in Canon Law. This Diocese (with its liturgical dancers and priests attempting to consecrate pizzas) could use a bit of Canon Law... Also, he was a member of the Diocesan Review Board (in Brooklyn) for Sexual Abuse of Minors. This, too, is useful in this Diocese, as it has struggled with this unfortunate crisis in the last couple of decades. Hopefully he will handle it better than it has been handled in the past...
Also, apparently he's a tenor opera singer... (See the full video at bottom, 1:41:00...)
Thanks for reading! Please pray a rosary for our new Bishop, that he may openly follow God's call and help to REFORM this Diocese (God knows that we need it)!
God bless you all!!
To watch the full Ordination and Installation of +Bp. Scharfenberger, click HERE.
You don't have to watch all 2 1/2 hours of it. I encourage you to just watch between 11:40 (When Dolan enters and doesn't realize his mic is on) until just after 12:25 where he makes a HILARIOUS comment about the woman in the rainbow stole. You don't wanna miss this one.
And for a few better quality photos, check out the ones posted on the page for the EF in Albany.