Saturday, January 16, 2010

Death of Archbishop in Haiti Earthquake - Ordinations of Toronto Auxiliary Bishops


Haitian Archbishop Joseph Serge Miot was known as a humble man who was close to the poor in the Archdiocese of Port-au-Prince.

Archbishop Miot, 63, was among tens of thousands of Haitians who died in the Jan. 12 earthquake.

For years he served as president of the Haitian bishops' justice and peace commission, and he often spoke of the need to help the citizens of the Western Hemisphere's most-impoverished nation.

"The misery is so great," Archbishop Miot told Catholic News Service in New York in May 1998. "Things have never been as bad as they are now. People who could not make a living in the rural areas have moved to the cities, and they are piling up in the slums."

Papal Nuncio to Haiti Archbishop Bernardito Auza said the archbishop "was hurled from the balcony outside his room while he was waiting for another person on their way to a ceremony. The force of the earthquake threw him headfirst off the balcony and he died, it seems, from the impact."

Because there was no electricity in the city, church officials took Archbishop Miot's body to the coastal city of St. Marc, said the nuncio. He said he asked that the body be buried immediately, which is not the normal Haitian tradition.

Haitian Holy Cross Father Rodolphe Arty, associate pastor of St. Thomas the Apostle Parish in Naperville, Ill., described Archbishop Miot as "a man of prayer" with a "great devotion to the Blessed Mother."

Father Arty, who said the archbishop taught him philosophy at the major seminary in Port-au-Prince noted that his friend would welcome anyone into his home.

He was "humble" and "very close to poor people in Port-au-Prince," said Father Arty, a former provincial of the Holy Cross Fathers in Haiti. The priest, who has been at the Illinois parish for three months, also said he crossed paths with the archbishop at youth and pastoral ministries meetings.

Joseph Serge Miot was born in Jeremie, Haiti, Nov. 23, 1946. He was ordained July 4, 1975.

As a priest, he taught and served as rector at the seminary in Port-au-Prince until he became rector of the newly established University of Notre Dame of Haiti in 1996.



In July 1997, Pope John Paul II named him coadjutor archbishop of Port-au-Prince in an effort to resolve a difficult situation that arose after a failed presidential coup in 1991. Many city residents held Port-au-Prince Archbishop Francois-Wolff Ligonde responsible for encouraging the coup, and crowds burned his residence as well as the headquarters of the Haitian bishops' conference, a historic church that formerly served as the cathedral and the Vatican nunciature.

Archbishop Miot was administratively in charge of the archdiocese as coadjutor; he succeeded as archbishop March 1, 2008. (CNS News Service)

* * * * * *

ORDINATION CELEBRATIONS IN LONDON (ON JANUARY 12), TORONTO (ON JANUARY 13)

On arrival for the ordination ceremony in St. Peter's Cathedral: Toronto Auxiliary Bishop William Terrence McGrattan; Salt and Light TV CEO Father Thomas Rosica, CSB; Nunciature Charge d'Affaires Msgr. Luca LoRusso (with bulla of appointment in hand)

Toronto Auxiliary Bishop Vincent Nguyen and Peterborough Bishop Nicola de Angelis, CFIC

Bishops process in snow and cold from the vesting area to the cathedral

London Bishop Ronald Fabbro, CSB prepares to place the mitre on Bishop McGrattan's head during the ordination ceremony

From Archbishop Collins' homily: Pope John Paul, in his letter on the mission of the bishop, writes: “As pastor of the flock and servant of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in hope, the Bishop must become as it were a transparent reflection of the very person of Christ, the Supreme Pastor. In the Roman Pontifical this requirement is specifically mentioned: “Receive the mitre, and may the splendour of holiness shine forth in you, so that when the Chief Shepherd appears, you may deserve to receive from him an unfading crown of glory.”” (Pastores Gregis 13)

Clergy relax at festive dinner in London Convention Centre hall

Antigonish Bishop-elect Brian Dunn counts on Precious Blood Sisters for spiritual support

A cross-section of the friends and supporters celebrating Bishop McGrattan

Bishop Nguyen acknowledges the support of the congregation following his ordination, while fellow Auxiliary Bishop John Boissonneau and Archbishop Thomas Collins look on approvingly

Archbishop Collins blesses the episcopal paraphernalia in St. John's Chapel prior to the ordination ritual

My fellow blogger Regina Archbishop Daniel Bohan [www.archbishopdanielsblog.blogspot.com] and Montreal-based Melkite Eparch Ibrahim Ibrahim, OBS

Concelebrating bishops rejoice in their new confreres

Congratulations!

Ottawa seminarians dressed to the nines for the occasion

A cross-section of dinner guests at the Toronto Eaton Centre Marriott Hotel

Redemptoris Mater seminarians at the reception

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