The Consecration

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The Consecration
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THE CONSECRATION. Tomorrow will be a memorable day in the history of the Catholic church in the Maritime Provinces, for it will not only witness the consecration of two Bishops-elect as coadjutors to living Bishops, an event which has never before taken place, but it will be the occasion of the presence of a number of ecclesiastics of high rank, such an assemblage as has never before been witnessed in the history of the Maritime Provinces. From the historic and other standpoints it will be, indeed, a memorable occasion. It was the hope of a large number of the Acadian French in the northern part of New Brunswick that in the choice of coadjutor bishops at the same time, there would be found the opportunity to recognize the admitted obligation of the church to the French in this part of Canada. It has not so happened, and however great may have been the disappointment in Acadian circles none the less loyal will be the allegiance to him who is named under the Seal of the Fisherman as coadjutor bishop of Chatham. The conferring of the episcopal function on two priests who are hereafter to act as coadjutors to the bishops of the respective dioceses is therefor in many ways a remarkable event. So far as relates to the direction of the affairs of either diocese, both Bishops Rogers and Sweeney are in the position today which they have held for forty years, each supreme as a bishop within his diocese. In their lifetimes, the Bishops of Thugga and Udena are simply their assistants for the better carrying out of the work of the episcopal function. But there is not and cannot be any ‘new bishop’ so long as either of the present venerable ordinaries lives and holds his episcopal prerogative. And that God may long sustain them in their work is the fervent prayer of the Catholic people in the Maritime provinces.