Cardinal Farley and the Conclave of 1914

 

 

John Cardinal Farley of the Archdiocese of New York, was the only American cardinal to arrive in Rome in time to participate in the Conclave of 1914, making him the second American to participate in a conclave.  Born in 1842 in Ireland he was orphaned at the age of 7.  An uncle took him under his wing and saw to his education.  He emigrated to the United States in 1864, and in 1865 after graduating from Saint John’s College in New York City, he began his study for the priesthood at Saint Joseph’s Provincial Seminary and completed them at the North American Pontifical College in Rome.

Ordained in 1870, he became secretary to Archbishop John McCloskey in 1872.  From 1884-1902 he served as pastor of Saint Gabriel’s in Manhattan, while also serving as Vicar General of the Archdiocese from 1891-1902.  In 1895 he was made Auxiliary Bishop of New York.  In 1902 he was made Archbishop of New York.    Pope Pius X gave him a Cardinal’s cap in 1911.  In 1914 he was already in Europe at the time of the death of the Pope Pius X and was the only American cardinal to participate in the Conclave.  During World War I he annoyed many of the Irish in New York for his pro-Allied stance, his contempt for Prussian militarism overcoming his ancestral antipathy for the English.  Like most Irish emigrants to America he wore his patriotism on his sleeve and helped rally Catholics to support the war effort after the US entered the War in 1917.  He did not live to see the Allied victory in the Great War, dying on September 17, 1918. (more…)

Published in: on January 29, 2020 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Cardinal Farley and the Conclave of 1914  
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Cardinal Mundelein and the Conclave of 1939

 

 

Thanks to the protest of Cardinal O’Connell to Pius XI after the Conclave of 1922, and the development of transoceanic air travel, all Cardinals not prevented by illness or extreme old age were able to participate in the Conclave of 1939, beginning on March 1, 1939 on the eve of World War II.  One of the American cardinals participating was George Cardinal Mundelein of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Born in 1872 on the lower east side in Manhattan, Mundelein broke the mold for most American Cardinals of his era in not being of Irish extraction,  He was only half-Irish on his mother’s side!  His father’s family was of German origin.   He spent all of his early career in the Brooklyn diocese, rising to Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn in 1909.  He was made Archbishop of the Chicago Archdiocese in late 1915.

His introduction to Chicago was turbulent in that an anarchist dosed chicken with arsenic at a banquet held in his honor.  An emergency emetic prepared by a Doctor in attendance prevented any fatalities.

The Archbishop was made a Cardinal in 1924 by Pius XI.

For his day, Mundelein was viewed as a liberal and he certainly was in his politics.  He was an enthusiastic supporter of the New Deal and he made this comment which would not be out of place in a Catholic Worker  paper today:

The trouble with [the Church] in the past has been that we were too often allied or drawn into an alliance with the wrong side. Selfish employers of labor have flattered the Church by calling it the great conservative force, and then called upon it to act as a police force while they paid but a pittance of wage to those who work for them. I hope that day has gone by. Our place is beside the workingman.

His views on other matters reveal the limitations of political classifications when applied to Churchmen.  He was an uncompromising foe of contraception and campaigned against sexual suggestiveness in films.  On easy divorce he had this to say:  “that not war, nor famine, nor pestilence have brought so much suffering and pain to the human race, as have hasty, ill-advised marriages, unions entered into without the knowledge, the preparation, the thought even an important commercial contract merits and receives. God made marriage an indissoluble contract, Christ made it a sacrament, the world today has made it a plaything of passion, an accompaniment of sex, a scrap of paper to be torn up at the whim of the participants.”

He did not live long after his participation in the Conclave of 1939, dying of a heart attack at age 67 in October of 1939. (more…)

Published in: on October 17, 2019 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Cardinal Mundelein and the Conclave of 1939  
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Cardinal Carberry and the First Conclave of 1978

 

 

 

John Cardinal Carberry was one of the men who had the unique experience of attending two Papal Conclaves within little more than a month of each other in 1978.  He was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1904, the youngest of ten children.  He enrolled at Cathedral College in 1915, where he displayed a love for the priesthood, playing the violin and baseball.  Like many men who become Cardinals in the Church in America, he studied at the North American Pontifical College and was ordained in 1929.

He served as a curate at Saint Peter’s in Glen Cove, New York.  Obtaining a doctorate of canon law from Catholic University of America in 1934.  From 1935-1940 he served as secretary to the Bishop and Assistant Chancellor of the diocese of Trenton, New Jersey.  (One of the hallmarks of Carberry’s career was a broad range of experience around the country rather than remaining in one diocese his entire life.)

From 1941-1945 he served as professor of canon law at Immaculate Conception Seminary in Huntington, New York.  From 1945-1956 he was Chief Judge of the diocese of Brooklyn.  In 1956 he was appointed Coadjutor Bishop of Lafayette, Indiana.  He succeeded as second Bishop of Lafayette in 1957.

He attended all the sessions of Vatican II and was an active participant.  In 1965 he was named seventh Bishop of Columbus, Ohio.  At Columbus he gave active support both to the civil rights movement and ecumenicalism.

In 1968 he was appointed the fifth Archbishop of Saint Louis.  By this time the chaos within the Church that followed in the aftermath of Vatican II was well underway and Carberry did his best to oppose it.  He celebrated Humanae Vitae and established the Archdiocesan Pro-Life Commission, giving an early impetus to the pro-life movement in Saint Louis.  He opposed Communion in the hand until 1977, fearing that it was irreverent and would lead to hosts being stolen for use in Black Masses.  He spoke out loudly against the sitcom Maude, one of Norman Lear’s television vehicles to preach liberalism to what he perceived as the great unwashed, which celebrated contraception and abortion.  He was one of the American prelates in the vanguard against the activities of the liberal Archbishop Jean Jadot, Apostolic Delegate to the United States from 1974-1980, whose influence on the Church in America was almost entirely pernicious.

Reaching the mandatory retirement age of 75, he retired in 1979 and passed away in 1998. (more…)

Published in: on March 21, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Cardinal Carberry and the First Conclave of 1978  
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James Cardinal McIntyre and the Conclave of 1963

James Cardinal McIntyre was very unhappy with Vatican II and spoke about it, one of the few Cardinals who did.  However, McIntyre was a man who never minded swimming against the stream.  Born on June 25, 1886 in New York City,  his father a member of the mounted police and his mother an immigrant from Ireland.  His father was rendered an invalid after a fall from a horse in Central Park, and his mother supported the family as a dressmaker.  When she died in 1896 his father and James went to live as a relative.  To support himself and his father, James became a runner on the New York Stock Exchange.  He was offered a junior partnership in 1914, but declined to pursue his dream of becoming a priest.  He was ordained in 1921 and served as associate pastor at Saint Gabriel’s on the lower East Side until he was made Assistant Chancellor of the Archdiocese of New York in 1923, rising to Chancellor in 1934.  In 1939 he formed the Columbiettes, the woman’s auxilary of the Knights of Columbus.  In 1940 he was named Coadjutor Bishop of the Archdiocese of New York.  In 1946 he was named Coadjutor Archbishop of New York, and in 1948 second Archbishop of Los Angeles.

Ever a fighter, McIntyre led the successful campaign to overturn a California state law which taxed Catholic schools.  He was made a Cardinal in 1953 by Pius XII.  Under his leadership the Archdiocese went through a period of immense growth, McIntyre showing exceptional foresight in purchasing land cheap as the sites of future churches and schools.  Endlessly hardworking, he made sure the Archdiocese ran efficiently and effectively.

McIntyre was Orthdox in his religion and hard right in his politics, which put him at odds with most other of the high clergy in the Church of his day.  He sent his priests to classes conducted by the John Birch Society about the threat of Communist infiltration.  He railed against moral laxity in the film industry, normally a sacred cow in California.

He never let politics stand in the way of friendships.  He was a friend of Dorothy Day although their political views were light years apart.  Go here to read what Day wrote about the Archbishop.

Vatican II met with his disfavor.  In a speech to the Council Fathers on October 23, 1962 he uttered words which proved prophetic in regard to proposed changes in the liturgy:  “The schema on the Liturgy proposes confusion and complication. If it is adopted, it would be an immediate scandal for our people. The continuity of the Mass must be kept.”

He voted in the Conclave of 1963.  He was no happier with Vatican II after the Conclave than before.  When the Immaculate Heart of Mary sisters went crazy following Vatican II, a process described in excruciating detail here, McIntyre told them that they had to follow Vatican II guidelines for religious.  They refused to do so, the Vatican backed McIntyre up, and almost all of the IHM sisters left the Church.  Until he retired in 1970 McIntyre continually butted heads with radical priests and nuns.  He was totally opposed to the zeitgeist of the time, and could clearly not have cared less.  After his retirement he served as parish priest at Saint Basil’s in Los Angeles, and would say the Tridentine Mass on the side altars.  He died at 93 in 1979. (more…)

Published in: on March 15, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on James Cardinal McIntyre and the Conclave of 1963  
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Cardinal Mooney and the Conclave of 1958

Edward Cardinal Mooney added a bit of tragic drama to the Conclave of 1958.  Born in 1882 in Mount Savage, Maryland, the seventh child in his family, he moved with them to Youngstown, Ohio at the age of 5.  His father was a tube mill worker and died in the early 1890’s.  His mother opened a small baking shop to support the family, and George and his brothers and sisters delivered the goods to customers.  He began his studies for the priesthood at Saint Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore and concluded them at the North American pontifical college.  Ordained in 1909, he taught dogmatic theology at Saint Mary’s Seminary in Cleveland until 1916.  He was the founding principal of the Cathedral Latin School in Cleveland from 1916-1922.

Made the spiritual director of the North American Pontifical College in Rome in 1923, he received the unique assignment of being the Apostolic Delegate to India and made a Titular Archbishop.  In India he helped found 15 missions and three parishes.  In 1931 he was made Apostolic Delegate to Japan.  In 1933 he was made fourth Bishop of Rochester with the personal title of Archbishop.  In 1937 he was named the first Archbishop of Detroit, receiving a Cardinal’s cap from Pope Pius XII in 1946.

Like most Catholic clergy of his generation, he was very pro-labor unions which stood him in good stead in the heavily unionized Detroit.  He immediately clashed heads with Father Charles Coughlin, the fiery controversial radio priest who operated from Royal Oak, Michigan.  The clashes continued until Father Coughlin agreed to end his radio program in 1942.

During World War II he was a strong supporter of the war effort viewing Nazi Germany as a mortal adversary of Christianity.

At the Conclave of 1958 he had a massive heart attack in Rome and died at age 70 just three hours before the Conclave began.  The more deranged sedevacantists claim that Mooney was murdered to help deny Cardinal Siri the papal throne, which is pure, unadulterated one hundred percent bunk. (more…)

Published in: on March 14, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Cardinal Mooney and the Conclave of 1958  
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Cardinal O’Connell and the Conclave of 1922

William Cardinal O’Connell was a man to be reckoned with.  His nickname in the archdiocese of Boston that he ruled for 36 years was “Number One”.   Born in 1859 to Irish immigrants, the youngest of eleven children, his father, a textile worker in Lowell, Massachusetts, died when William was four.   A gifted student, he earned gold medals in philosophy, chemistry and physics at Boston College.  Studying for the priesthood at the North American Pontifical College he was ordained in 1884.  After serving as pastor in parishes in Medford and Boston, he was made rector of the North American Pontifical College in 1895.

He was made Bishop of Portland Maine in 1901.  In 1905 he received the assignment of papal envoy to Japan.  In 1906 he was named Coadjutor Archbishop of Boston, raising some eyebrows from the perception that he had actively campaigned for the job.  In 1907 he became the second Archbishop of Boston and in 1911 was made a Cardinal, the first Archbishop of Boston to receive that distinction.

He made strenuous efforts to get to the Conclave of 1914 and 1922, although arriving late on each occasion.  In 1922 he became the first Cardinal to fly, traveling by air from Boston to New York after having an ocean liner held for his boarding.  When he arrived late he made representations to the newly elected Pius XI that more time needed to be given between the death of a pope and the conclave to give time for cardinals outside of Europe to get to Rome.  The Pope agreed and the time was lengthened.  Cardinal O’Connell participated in the Conclave in 1939. (more…)

Cardinal Gibbons and the Stormy Conclave of 1903

 

 

 

James Cardinal Gibbons of the Archdiocese of Baltimore was the second American cardinal and an enormously important figure both within the history of the Church in America and the history of America in general.  His championing of the rights of labor in the nineteenth century helped direct America on a more peaceful path in the relationship between labor and capital than existed in many other nations.  Many posts could be written about this man and I intend to write them!  Today we will focus on the fact that he was the first American cardinal to participate in a papal conclave.

When Pope Leo XIII died in 1903 Cardinal Gibbons happened to be in Rome.  Without that fortuitous circumstance he would most likely have not been able to participate in the subsequent Conclave.  In 1914 with the death of Pope Pius X, Cardinal Gibbons boarded a rapid steamer to cross the Atlantic but arrived too late to participate in the Conclave.  Thus the Conclave of 1903 was the only one Cardinal Gibbons was fated to participate in, but it certainly was a dramatic one.

The first Conclave to occur within the glare of modern media, the proceedings leaked like a sieve to eager waiting journalists, so much so that after this Conclave Pope Pius decreed that participants were to take an oath of silence as to the proceedings of all future conclaves. (more…)

Published in: on March 10, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments (4)  
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