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Rev. Terry Bennis with Bishop Donald Hying at Parish Picnic Mass at North Judson Park

Rev. Terry Bennis prays with Bishop Donald Hying at a parish picnic mass at North Judson Park for a fellowship gathering.

Last weekend's weather blessing, which is continuing this week with sunshine and mild temperatures, welcomed special events from east to west for both Catholic Diocese of Gary Bishop Donald J. Hying and Metropolitan Archbishop of Chicago Blase J. Cupich.

At our tiny rural farm parish, we hosted a joint church family picnic Saturday at the town park for both All Saints Catholic Church in San Pierre and Saints Cyril and Methodius in North Judson. Bishop Hying, who just celebrated his 52nd birthday a week ago, attended to join our parish priest Rev. Terry Bennis for mass followed by the shared potluck dinner. My oldest brother Tom's daughter, my niece Bethany, took some great photos to capture the weekend's memories.

And on Sunday, there was also much excitement in downtown Chicago when I attended mass at Holy Name Cathedral.

For the first time in recent memory, a special mass at the cathedral in Chicago marked the event of Archbishop Cupich vested with his Pallium, the symbol of his office as Archbishop of the Metropolitian See of Chicago.

The following is the beautiful symbolism and tradition of this event as explained by the Liturgy Office of the Chicago Archdiocese:

"When an Archbishop is appointed to a new archdiocese, he requests 'the Pallium from the Holy See.' The Pallium is a scarf, or stole-like vestment that is worn over the chasuble when the Archbishop celebrates Mass. It is about 2 inches wide, and it rests on the shoulders, with a pendant or lappet in the front and the back which hangs about 12 inches (when it's viewed from the front or the back, it resembles the letter Y). The Pallium is white, with six black crosses. Three of those crosses (the ones on the front, back and left shoulder) are ornamented with a gold pin, symbolizing the three nails of Christ's crucifixion.

"Some of the white wool of the Pallium comes from two lambs that are blessed each year by the Pope on the feast of St. Agnes. In addition, each of the pendants which hang in front and back are tipped with black satin, resembling the hoof of a lamb; thus the imagery being that of the Archbishop (the chief shepherd of the diocese) carrying a lamb on his shoulders, in imitation of Christ the Good Shepherd. Originally, the Pallium was worn only by the Pope but now it is given, by him, to metropolitan Archbishops as a sign of their unity with the Pope. (Every diocese is part of a collection of dioceses called a Province. In the United States, the Provinces most often – but not always – are designated by state lines; thus, the dioceses of Illinois are a Province.)

"The conferral of the Pallium on a new Archbishop is actually part of the Rite of Installation of a Bishop in his Cathedral Church. That is, when a new Archbishop is received in his Cathedral and he takes possession of the Archdiocese, the Nuncio (the Pope's delegate in our country) would confer it as part of the Rite. However, some 32 years ago, Saint John Paul II took the investiture of the Pallium out of the Rite of Installation, and instead called new Archbishops to Rome where he invested them himself on the Solemnity of Ss. Peter and Paul on June 29. Pope Francis, in January of this year, decided that new Archbishops will once again receive the Pallium in their own Cathedrals, in the midst of their own people."

For this week's recipe, I have a special offering shared with me from the priest who guided my college years when I attended Valparaiso University from 1988 to 1992, when Rev. Doug Mayer was the priest at St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Student Center.

Rev. Mayer, who today is at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Valparaiso, is a wonderful cook and we both shared a wonderful mutual friend, Irene Jakubowski, who I have written about so often in the past. We both loved dining on Rev. Mayer's delicious recipe for dumplings, which are featured for readers this week.

Father Doug's Bohemian Dumplings

2 cups self rising flour

1 cup milk

2 egg yolks

Pinch of salt

2 cups diced stale white bread

4 tablespoons butter

1/3 cup melted butter, margarine or goose fat

2 egg whites

DIRECTIONS: Sift flour in bowl, set aside. In a second bowl, mix milk, egg yolks and salt and then gradually mix wet bowl of ingredients into the flour bowl and blend until smooth. Saute the bread in four tablespoons of butter until golden. Spread the diced bread pieces over the dough in the bowl and pour the 1/3 cup melted butter or margarine over the entire dough mixture in the bowl. Let stand for one hour in a warm place. After the one hour, blend the diced bread pieces with the dough. Beat the 2 egg whites until stiff and fold into the dough. Soak a tea towel in water, squeeze dry and line a sieve or colander with it. Add the dough and pull the cloth up and around the dough and tie off the cloth around the top. Place on a rack in a pot of boiling water and poach for one hour, one half hour on each side. After cooking, transfer to a plate and allow to cool a few minutes before slicing. Once cool, untie it and remove the cloth. Cut the dumpling into slices by using a thread, such as pastry line or even clean, unflavored dental floss. Serve dumplings with pork roast and gravy. Dumplings can even be made a day ahead and then placed in a colander and steamed over water to reheat before serving the next day. Makes 10 servings.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the writer. He can be reached at philip.potempa@nwi.com or (219) 852-4327.

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