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August 7, 1992     The Message
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August 7, 1992

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August 7, 1992 The Message Monthly m for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana 'Cathedra' means chair ...... ,, , ..... common symbol helps explain the purpose of a cathedral By FR. WILLIAM DEERING rosaryl whether she is pre- United Statesl of America. Like the chairs of Morn and toral Office of Bishops, Chris= Director of Worship In our hurch, we many and sym- )ols. Water, and wine Come readily to aind. One symbol that is not so Qbvious -- but is nonetheless Powerful -- is he symbol of chair. The Latin word for chair is cathe- dra, and that is the root of the Vord we use to describe the Central church 0f a diocese: the cathedral is the site 0f the bishop's chair. Perhaps we don't often think of chairs as sym- bols; they truly are. Think of Dad's chair. And whether he is at home or not, or even if he is deceased, that chair is still symbolic of Dad's Presence in the family. Mother's chair enjoys the same prominence. This is the chair where she sits when she sews or reads or prays her sent with the family now or not, the chair is still a symbol of her impor- tance to the family. Perhaps you've been to Indepen- dence Hall in Philadel- phia. The chairs of the first con- gress, and the chair in which George Washington sat are still there. These are impor- tant sym- bols for the ii RAY'S FIRE & SAFETY Fire Extinguisher Sales & Service 117 Busseron Street Commercial and Residential MICK RAY: Home: 882-4185 Shop: 886-4960 o Pager: 885-7571 II II Sr. Marie Edward,0.P./Vocation Directress Dominican Sisters of Hawthorne 600 Linda Avenue, Hawthorne, NY 10532 (914) 769-4794 Oear Sr. Edward: 1 would like to know more about your Comraunity, Name Add,oss State Zip E-IN SHARE A GREAT COMPASS[()N The Domin&an Sisters Of Hawthorne. We nurse incurable cancer patients in our seven free, modern nursing homes, located in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Massachusetts, Georgia and Minnesota. Many who enter our community have no prior nursing experience, but  we all share a great compassion for the suffering poor and delight at being able to help them. Living the vows and participating in a life of prayer gives us the ability to serve God in this Apostolate. We seek women who are full of love for Christ, and desire to join a congregation with a strong spiritual and community fife. These early legislators and what they did and stood for are still symbolized in these chairs. Early in the history of the Catholic Church the impor- tance of the symbolism of the Chair of St. Peter was real- ized. The feast of "Chair of St. Peter, Apostle," which is cel- ebrated on February 22, goes back to early in the fourth century. It commemorates Peter's confession of faith: "You are the Messiah, the Son of God," (Matt 16:16). It also recalls the promises of Jesus to Peter that his faith would be firm and that he would be a rock foundation that would survive any at- tempts to destroy what Jesus founded. Already in the second cen- tury a certain honor was given to the Bishop of Rome and to the Church (diocese) of Rome. St. Irenaeus was a bishop in what is now known as Southern France. Irenaeus wrote: "For with this Church (the Church of Rome), be- cause of its more efficient leadership, all Churches must agree." When Irenaeus wrote about "all Churches," he meant "the faithful of all places." And the ultimate reason for all Churches to agree with the Church of Rome was plainly written: "because in it the apostolic tradition has always been preserved." lrenaeus and others had great respect for the Church of Rome because of its "supe- rior" origin, namely, its founding by the apostles Peter and Paul. 'Chair churches' in Indiana listed Following the 1965 sale of the property and the demoli- tion of Assumption Cathe- dral, the "chair church" of the Diocese of Evansville has been the Pro-Cathedral of the Mast Holy Trinity. Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfin- er presides over diocesan liturgical celebrations at the pro-cathedral. Msgr. Michael O.J. Wolf is the parish pastor. The Diocese of Fort Wayne- South Bend has co-cathedrals -- the Cathedral of the Im- maculate Conception in Fort Wayne, and St. Matthew Cathedral in South Bend. The Diocese of Gary has the Cathedral of Holy Angels. St. Mary Cathedral is the bishop's church in the Dio- cese of Lafayette. In the Archdiocese of Indi- anapolis, SS. Peter and Paul Cathedral is the archbishop's church. The renovation com- mittee for the cathedral in In- dianapolis was chaired by Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfinger -- when he was Msgr. Get- telfinger serving the archdiocese. Dad, and the chairs of Inde- pendence Hall, the Chair of St. Peter becomes a sign of his faith and teaching and values and unity. The prayer of the Feast of the Chair of Peter asks that "nothing di- vide or weaken our unity in faith and love." The Bishop's chair in his cathedral also is a sign of the teachings of the faith and of the particular church's (dio- cese's) unity with the local bishop and with the Bishoi 3 of Rome. (The presidential chairs in the parish churches of the diocese are also re- minders of the unity of all with the local bishop and the Bishop of Rome together with all the faithful gathered at the Eucharistic table.) "The diocese forms that part of the people of God en- trusted to the pastoral care of the bishop with the assis- tance of the presbyterate. In allegiance to its pastor and by him gathered together in the Holy Spirit through the Gospel and the eucharist, the diocese stands as a particular Church, iri which Christ's one, holy, catholic, and apos- tolic Church is truly present and at work." (Decree on Pas- tus Dominus, no. 11) The mission statement of a "chair church" in the Diocese of Evansville could say that it is the central church of the diocese. It is the symbol of unity of the Catholic people of Southwestern Indiana in faith and worship. The bishop's church in the Diocese of Evansville has the same mission as any cathe: dral church in any diocese. Ii is the physical symbol of Christ's presence in South: western Indiana just as St. John Lateran (the Pope's church} is the symbol of Christ's presence in the Church of Rome. In the words of St. Ignatius of Antioch (martyred 107 A.D.): "Just aswhere Christ Jesus is, there also is the Catholic Church, so als0 where the bishop is, there also should be the whole as- sembly of his people." (Letter to the Smyrnians) A Cathedral (or the Pro- Cathedral in the Diocese of Evansville) is the sign of all the Catholic people in .the diocese assembled in unity with their bishop. Document defines 'cathedral On September 7, 1984, Pope John Paul II ordered the publication called the "Ceremonial of Bishops." The following is a quotation from the decree of promulgation: "Provisions are made with the intention of achieving a liturgy for bishops that is genuine, simple, clear, dignified, and pastorally effective. These norms foster unity of spirit and avoid int.roducing any pointless singularity into the liturgy as celebrated by a bishop. "The "Ceremonial of Bishops" includes a chapter enti- tled "The Cathedral Church." Following are several para- graphs from this chapter: 42. The cathedral church is the church that is the site of the bishop's cathedra (Latin for chair), the sign of his teaching office and pastoral power in the particular Church (i.e., diocese), and a sign also of the unity of be- lievers in the faith that the bishop proclaims as shepherd of the Lord's flock. In this church, on the more solemn liturgical days, the bishop presides at the lituy. There, also, unless pastoral considerations suggest otherwise, he consecrates the sacred chrism and confers the sacrament of holy orders. 43. The diocesan cathedral "in the majesty of its build- ing is a symbol of the spiritual temple that is built up in souls and is resplendent with the glory of divie grace. As St. Paul says: 'We are the temple of the livingod. (2 C0r. 6:16) The cathedral, furthermore, should be regarded as .... the express image of Christ's visible Church,praying, .... , singing, and worshiping on earth. The cathed.rat: Shouid be:' regarded as the image of Christ's Mystical Body, whose .... .,. members are joined together in an organism of charity that is sustained by the outpouring of God's gifts." (Paul VI, Mirificus eventus, Dec. 7, 1965) 44. With good reason, then the cathedral church should be regarded as the center of the liturgical life of the diocese. 45. Effective measures should be taken to instill esteem and reverence for the cathedral church in the hearts of the fait'hful. Among such measures are the annual celebration of the dedication of the cathedral and pilgrimages in which the faithful, especially in groups of parishes or sec- tions of the diocese, visit the cathedral in a spirit of devotion.. 46. The cathedral church should be a model for the otherl churches of the diocese in its conformity to the directives laid down in liturgical documents and books with regard Peep es to the arrangement and adornment of churches. :: Trust 47. The bishop's cathedra or chair mentioned in fie. 42 Company should be a chair that stands alone and is permanently in- 59 SOUTH MAIN STREET stalled. Its placement should make it clear that the bishop . P.O. nox 191 is presiding over the whole community of the faithful. UN'['ON, INDIANA 47441 i