Mighty, Mighty John O' Connor -UPDATE

Cardinal John Joseph O’ Connor, Priest and Patriot (Rear Admiral, USN)

Today is the tenth anniversary of the death of Cardinal O’ Connor, who was one of my heroes. A priest and a patriot, a “prince” of the church, who never lost his “common” touch, and a champion for life.

New Evangelization TV (NET-TV) will be livestreaming coverage of both a conference and the memorial Mass that will take place at St. Patrick’s Cathedral today. The conference begins at 4:00 and will feature Archbishop Timothy Dolan (who is currently attempting to fill O’ Connor’s big shoes), Mother Mary Agnes Donovan of the Sisters of Life (founded by O’ Connor), former Mayor Ed Koch, and many more. The Mass begins at 5:30.

You can watch it all here. Just hit the “watch now” button.

Currents Covers the Memorial

Fr. Frank Pavone: Thank you, Cardinal O’ Connor

First Things reruns a tribute.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • F

    God rest ‘im, he was a manly man! Need some more of those. A hero to me. Miss him.

  • Ellen

    I admired him so much. I was always touched by the relationship he had with Hizzoner Ed Koch. They disagreed on so much, but never let it mar their friendship. That’s something we’ve lost lately – the ability to disagree but to remain courteous and friendly.

  • Tempus_Fugit

    I attended the Cardinal’s last Midnight Mass at St. Pat’s in 1999. It was an unforgettable experience for many reasons.

  • Rand Careaga

    He was a mixed bag, in the sense that both Left (as the bulk of your commentators seem to regard we Eisenhower Republicans who look in from time to time) and Right will find among his public positions stances we are prepared to embrace and to reject. I think he was wrong to condemn condoms as a barrier to AIDS transmission; I’m going to guess that bender, for example, wasn’t/isn’t comfortable with the Cardinal’s opposition to Reagan administration underwriting of right-wing death squads (pardon me, “freedom fighters”) in Central America. It’s tough to pigeonhole most of the great ones.

    [All the "great ones" are "mixed bags, whether they are secular or religious...but the great Catholics confound the worldly because they can't be pigeonholed, indeed. That's because Catholic social teaching is catholic in that it takes a whole view of things - whole of humanity, including body mind and spirit - whole of the broken human condition. A world that is comfortable looking at "sets" and "identities" (and not especially comfy looking at the spiritual) can't fathom it. Those damn bishops won't okay condoms, and they won't okay freedom fighters, either! :-) Those damn Catholics pray outside of abortion clinics and work with the poorest of the poor, too. As Kristof said, "who can mock this church?" Although he'd like to -like Archie Bunker- separate the "good" sorts of Catholics (socially aware, heroic and (if possible) pro-everything-Kristof-likes) from the "bad" sorts (too stuck on tradition, Rome, liturgy, rules, the word "no.") But the thing is, Catholicism is all of it. It takes every question facing humanity and subjects it to reason, informed by faith and revealed, objective (not subjective) truth. So, while people would like to condemn all Catholics, they do have the damnedest time making sense while they do it! In my case, for instance, people who cannot understand what the Catholic bishops are about regarding illegal immigrants have decided to reduce it to a cynical and craven, "asses in the pews" because that is more understandable. I am in a bad and very tired mood tonight, but this is not meant to be unfriendly, so if the tone seems, off, please forgive -admin]

  • Rand Careaga

    Oops! /we/us. I look forward to First Things introducing a “preview” function.

  • http://jscafenette.com/ Manny

    He was a great man. I loved him too. May he look down on us and smile. I wish he was with us through this church crises.

  • http://jscafenette.com/ Manny

    Oh my God, that remembrance piece by Mayor Koch brought tears to my eyes. That was just so heart warming. A must read.

  • http://www.savkobabe.blogspot.com Gayle Miller

    I watched the memorial on EWTN yesterday since I’m off on Mondays. I must say, the memorial could have been better coordinated and the choirs were fairly raggedy as well. Certainly not what one would expect in a memorial mass for such a towering American Catholic Cardinal!

  • Jim Hicks

    My wife called me at work early yesterday to tell me I WOULD be home by 4pm! Glad I listened to her for a change! Enjoyed watching the procedings on EWTN.

    I particularly loved the talk by THEE MAYOR. I disagreed with Ed Kock more than I disagreed with the Cardinal (THEE MAYOR was a Democrat, after all). But to this day I still love them both. I am so glad God blessed us and, in particular NYC, with the gifts they gave us.

  • http://vita-nostra-in-ecclesia.blogspot.com Bender

    You know, if you are going to bait someone (in the course of a behind-the-back ad hominem attack), you should at the very least not engage in such blatant mischaracterization (that “death squad” slander) when doing so.

    For the record, I was in support of Pope John Paul II’s hard-line opposition to the Communist Sandinistas in Nicaragua, as well as his opposition to liberation theology. I was also in support of the freedom-loving Nicaraguans who sought to bring freedom to their oppressed country, as well as the efforts of the United States to assist them in their efforts, and in our efforts to prevent the Sandinistas and Cubans from exporting the Revolution to places like El Salvador, Guatamala, and Honduras.

    John Cardinal O’Connor, of happy memory, actually supported the goals of freedom, including seeking an end to the Sandinista persecution of the Catholic Church, and Cardinal O’Connor stood in support of Cardinal Miguel Obando y Bravo of Nicaragua, who supported the Contras. It might be that Cardinal O’Connor voiced some reservations about U.S. policy to effect freedom in Central America, but such is not surprising. I would fully expect any holy man to caution against the use of warfare and to remind us always of the precepts of just war doctrine.

    Perhaps he might have disagreed with the Reagan Administration’s prudential judgment in the application of just war doctrine to stopping Communist expansion in Central America (just as he questioned whether Bill Clinton’s little war in Kosovo met the conditions for just war), but Cardinal O’Connor recognized that the ultimate judgment in such matters was for the competent government authorities to make, not him. It was for Cardinal O’Connor, on the other hand, to voice the moral principles at issue.

    And contrary to the predictions of some (who discourteously drag my name into a discussion when I am not here and, thus, not in a position to respond unless someone e-mails me about it), I am glad that he did so.

  • Lori

    I heard Cardinal O’Connor speak just once, to an audience of students at the University of Chicago in the mid-’80s. I remember being a bit anxious that in such a stronghold of leftist intellectualism he would meet with rudeness and protests, but I heard not a peep as he expounded so wisely and joyously on the balance the Catholic Church brings to the world. I wish I had a recording of that talk. I left the auditorium so happy to have heard him, so proud to be Catholic. God bless you, dear Cardinal.

  • http://breadhere.blogspot.com Fran Rossi Szpylczyn

    I am a little late to this, but wanted to leave a my few words…

    When I returned to the Roman Catholic Church – a return that was made with no shortage of confusion and ambivalence in 1990, I began to attend daily mass at the church nearest to my office. That church happened to be St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

    Now at that time, I was far, far from where I am today and I was a frequent critic of Cardinal O’Connor, something that I am not proud to say. In any case, he was the presider at almost every daily mass… If he was in town, he presided. And he did so in the most pastoral and engaging way.

    May he rest in peace and be remembered