How does an installation work?

By Michelle Martin | Staff Writer
Sunday, November 16, 2014

Holy Name Cathedral, seen in this file photo, will host three days of official liturgies and ceremonies surrounding the installation of Archbishop Cupich as the ninth archbishop of Chicago. (Karen Callaway/Catholic New World)

Archbishop Blase Cupich will become the ninth archbishop of Chicago at the installation Mass Nov. 18 at Holy Name Cathedral, but the liturgical rites surrounding the transition will begin the evening before.

That’s when the archbishop-designate will be formally welcomed to the cathedral by the rector, Msgr. Dan Mayall.

The rite of reception for a bishop will begin with Archbishop Cupich knocking at the doors of the cathedral, 735 N. State St., said Todd Williamson, director of the Office for Divine Worship. By knocking, he symbolically asks to be admitted.

“The door is very symbolic in Catholic ritual,” Williamson said. “It may seem a simple rite of reception, but it’s very profound.”

Retired Auxiliary Bishop Raymond Goedert, who served as administrator of the archdiocese after Cardinal Joseph Bernardin died, remembers receiving Cardinal George into the cathedral the evening before he was installed.

“It was a nice little burden being lifted off my shoulders,” Bishop Goedert said. “It was a happy day in my life.”

Mayall will receive Archbishop Cupich at the doors and give him a crucifix to reverence, then give him holy water with which to bless himself and the crucifix. The archbishop then will be led to the front of the cathedral, where Cardinal George will begin the Liturgy of the Word.

Immediately after the introduction and before the readings, Archbishop Cupich will be greeted by representatives from the leadership. Included in the rite will be members of the Archdiocesan Pastoral Council; Father Peter Sneig, the moderator of the curia; Kevin Marzalik, the chancellor; the College of Consultors; and the executive board of the Presbyteral Council.

He also will be greeted by civic leaders, with both Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn expected, along with the consul general from Croatia, the home of Archbishop Cupich’s ancestors.

Then he will be greeted by ecumenical and interfaith leaders from the Chicago area, Williamson said.

“It’s really a symbolic greeting from those he will be working with,” Williamson.

After the greetings, the Liturgy of the Word will continue with the readings. Archbishop Cupich will preach, then there will be intercessory prayers and the Lord’s Prayer.

Following the rite there will be an informal reception. At the same time, workers will ready the cathedral for the installation Mass the following day. That’s when they will remove Cardinal George’s coat-of-arms from above the cathedra — the bishop’s chair — and install Archbishop Cupich’s.

Ceremonies on Nov. 18 will begin with a private swearing in of the new archbishop as corporation sole, giving him civil legal authority over the archdiocese.

Then the installation Mass will begin, with the very first parts celebrated by Cardinal George, who will walk last in the entrance procession as the celebrant.

However, after the sign of the cross and the greeting, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the apostolic nuncio, will step forward and read the English translation of the apostolic mandate (papal bull) from Pope Francis naming Blase Cupich the new archbishop of Chicago, Williamson said.

A deacon — expected to be Deacon Richard Hudzik, vicar for deacons — will then display the mandate to the college of consultors, who will be seated on the sanctuary platform, and to the congregation.

Archbishop Vigano then will ask Archbishop Cupich if he accepts the appointment

Next, Cardinal George and Archbishop Vigano will lead Archbishop Cupich to the cathedra, and he will sit in the bishop’s chair for the first time. Cardinal George then will hand him a crozier, or bishop’s staff. He is expected to use one of Cardinal George Mundelein’s croziers.

“Then it’s acclamations and applause,” Williamson said. “There is an expression of joy, because we do not have a vacant seat.”

Once the applause subsides, the Mass continues with Archbishop Cupich celebrating, and it moves directly to the Gloria.

“It’s just a wonderful expression of joy, of praising God for what God has done for us,” Williamson said.

The previous installation

Auxiliary Bishop John Manz, who was ordained a bishop less than a year before Cardinal Joseph Bernardin died in 1996, recalled Cardinal George’s installation Mass.

There are far fewer components to the installation of an existing bishop than to the ordination of a new bishop, he said.

“He goes to the bishop’s seat and he gets the crozier,” Bishop Manz said. “That’s pretty much the basics of it. It’s a very simple ceremony.”

It was a bit different when Cardinal George was installed, he said, because there was no retiring bishop to take part in the proceedings.

The role of the auxiliary bishops is more or less just to be present, Bishop Manz said, to offer support to the new ordinary as he adjusts to his new role.

“With five active auxiliary bishops, Chicago is somewhat unique,” he said.

Meeting religious and consecrated

On Nov. 19, Archbishop Cupich will join in morning prayer at the cathedral with representatives of all of the men’s and women’s religious communities active in the archdiocese, along with people in other forms of consecrated life and members of lay ecclesial movements.

That evening, he will join active deacons and their wives and lay ecclesial ministers and their spouses in sung vespers, also at the cathedral.

While admission to all the cathedral liturgies surrounding the installation will be by ticket only, Archbishop Cupich is planning to celebrate Mass in each of the archdiocese’s six vicariates over the following months, and all will be welcome, Williamson said.