|October 15, 2012 • VOL. 50, NO. 18 • Oakland, CA|
'Keep me in your prayers and I will keep you in mine'
With incense, chanting, an honor guard composed of Knights of Columbus from throughout the East Bay, and some fond words of farewell, the Most Rev. Salvatore J. Cordileone celebrated his last Mass at the Cathedral of Christ the Light before his installation as archbishop of San Francisco.
From parishioners at the cathedral parish to visitors, they expressed their thanks for Archbishop Cordileone's service.
"I appreciate his teaching on family life issues," said Elizabeth Hockel, who in addition to being in the cathedral choir directs the youth choir. "We're really going to miss him," she said. "At least he'll be nearby."
"We love him from our hearts," said John Burkart. "We will always pray for him."
Among the visitors were Lori and Walter Hoye, prominent pro-life activists. "He's indeed my friend," said the Rev. Walter Hoye. The Hoyes travel often, but made sure they would be in town. "This is special," said the Rev. Hoye, whose association with Archbishop Cordileone goes back to the time they were in high school in San Diego.
The Mass was concelebrated by the Rev. Ray Sacca, cathedral rector; the Rev. Joseph Nguyen, parochial vicar; the Rev. George Mockel, moderator of the curia; the Rev. Jerrold Kennedy, a retired diocesan priest; the Rev. David Farrugia, a Dominican priest and former pastor of St. Mary Magdalen in Berkeley; and the Rev. Efrain Bautista, a friend of Archbishop Cordileone from the Diocese of San Diego.
"The day has finally come," Archbishop Cordileone began his homily, "much sooner than any of us would have thought."
He acknowledged the diversity and hospitality in the diocese.
At the end of Mass, Father Sacca gave Archbishop Cordileone a gift from the congregation: an icon of the Holy Family.
"We want to express our thanks to you for your years of service and loving ministry among us," Father Sacca said. "As you leave this family in Oakland, we pray the Holy Family will watch over you as you prepare to become the pastor of the family awaiting you," he said.
Archbishop Cordileone said he was thankful for "such a powerful reminder of our ministry." He asked the congregation, "Please keep me in your prayers and I will keep you in mine."
As he processed out of the church, blessing the faithful, cameras popped out of purses and pockets. "If he gets bored sometimes, he's welcome to be with us," said Raquel Hazell.
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