First Bishop Eulogizes First President

In 1789, America got its first President, George Washington, and its first R.C. Bishop, John Carroll. At the time of the former’s death in 1799, Bishop Caroll gave the following eulogy on the Founding Father’s passing: The last act of his supreme magistracy was to inculcate in most impressive language on his countrymen… his deliberate [Read More...]

Professor, Archbishop, Papal Diplomat

Today marks the death of Cardinal Aloisius Muench (1889-1962), professor, bishop, and papal diplomat. Born in Milwaukee to German immigrants, he studied for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee at St. Francis Seminary. Ordained in 1913, he went on to earn a doctorate a the University of Fribourg in Switzerland, followed by post-doctoral studies in France and [Read More...]

Polish Seminary Started in Detroit, 1885

Yesterday was the Feast of SS. Cyril & Methodius, and today in 1903 marks the death of Father Joseph Dabrowski , who in 1885 founded SS. Cyril & Methodius Seminary to train Polish priests for work in America. For Poles, the nineteenth century is known as the “century of sadness.” Poland was divided between the [Read More...]

This Day in Brooklyn Catholic History

On this day in 1891, the First Mass was celebrated at Blessed Sacrament Church in Brooklyn’s Cypress Hills section. The Mass was held in the hall adjoining the Lafayette Hotel located at Cresecent and Fulton Streets. Before then, the nearest parish to Cypress Hills was St. Malachy’s in East New York, which the parish history [Read More...]

Hierarchy reestablished in England after 300 years

Today marks the death of Nicholas Wiseman (1802-1865), first Archbishop of Westminster and the first resident Cardinal in England for almost three hundred years. In 1850 he oversaw the reestablishment of the Roman Catholic hierarchy in England and Wales. Under Henry VIII, Roman Catholic dioceses (the most famous being Canterbury) became Anglican. Rather than using [Read More...]

How to get in good with your Bishop…

Put him in a stained glass window! This window, located in the sacristy of St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Woodhaven, was installed during the 1960′s. At the time, Bryan J. McEntegart was Bishop of Brooklyn (1957-1968). Bishop McEntegart can be seen on the right, alongside of Christ and Pope Paul VI. The Bishop’s reaction to [Read More...]

America’s One and Only Black Catholic Newspaper

There’s never been a newspaper quite like The American Catholic Tribune, an independent Catholic newspaper published between 1886 and 1897. What made it unique was that it was a paper published for African-American Catholics, by African-American Catholics. The driving force behind the paper was a Daniel A. Rudd (1854-1933), a former slave from Bardstown, a [Read More...]

Happy Birthday, Mrs. Brady!

Today marks pop culture icon and lifelong Catholic Florence Henderson’s seventy-fifth birthday. Born Florence Agnes Henderson in Owensboro, Kentucky, she studied at St. Francis Academy, a local girls’ high school run by the Sisters of St. Benedict of Ferdinand. After graduation she went to New York, making her Broadway debut in 1952. (No information is [Read More...]

Before Father Duffy, there was Father Chidwick

On February 14, 1898, in Spanish-controlled Havana harbor, the U.S. battleship Maine blew up, the event that triggered the Spanish-American War. Research now shows that the explosion was an accident, but a war-hungry American public was all too eager to accept the conspiracy theory hatched by the jingoist “Yellow Press.” One of the forgotten heroes [Read More...]

Upcoming Lecture on Italian Emigrants

JOHN D. CALANDRA ITALIAN AMERICAN INSTITUTEQueens College, CUNY THE PHILIP V. CANNISTRARO SEMINAR SERIES IN ITALIAN AMERICAN STUDIES Wednesday, February 25, 2009, 6 p.m.Emigrant Nation: The Making of Italy AbroadMark Choate, Brigham Young UniversityBetween 1880 and 1915, thirteen million Italians left their homeland, launching the largest emigration from any country in recorded world history. As [Read More...]