Daily Update: Tuesday, October 6th, 2015

Bruno and Marie Rose Durocher

Today is the Optional Memorial of Saint Bruno, Priest (died 1101), the Optional Memorial of Blessed Marie Rose Durocher, Virgin (died 1849), and the Remembrance of Servant of God Terence Cooke, Bishop (died 1983)

Born in 1030 in Cologne, Germany, Saint Bruno was educated in Paris and Rheims, France. Ordained about 1055, he taught theology, and one of his students later became Pope Blessed Urban II. From 1057 to 1075 he presided over the cathedral school at Rheims, eventually becoming the Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Rheims. He criticized the worldliness he saw in his fellow clergy, and opposed Manasses, Archbishop of Rheims, because of his laxity and mismanagement. Following a vision he received of a secluded hermitage where he could spend his life becoming closer to God, he retired to a mountain near Chartreuse in Dauphiny in 1084 and with the help of Saint Hugh of Grenoble, he founded what became the first house of the Carthusian Order; he and his brothers supported themselves as manuscript copyists. He became an assistant to Pope Urban II (his former student) in 1090, and supported his efforts at reform. Retiring from public life, he and his companions built a hermitage at Torre, where, in 1095, the monastery of Saint Stephen was built. Bruno combined in the religious life the eremitical and the cenobitic; his learning is apparent from his scriptural commentaries. Canonized in 1693, he is the Patron Saint of monastic fraternities and of trade marks, of the religious order of the Carthusians, and of the Calabria region of Italy. We also honor Blessed Marie Rose Durocher, Virgin (died 1849). Born in 1811 in Saint Antoine-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada as Eulalie Durocher, the tenth of eleven children, she felt drawn to the religious life, but was turned away due to frail health. She became housekeeper to her brother Theophile, a priest at Beloeil. Because newly independent Canada still had a bit of the wild about it, its bishop (the whole country was a single diocese) had trouble getting European religious to emigrate, so he founded new communities. In 1843 he convinced Eulalie to help found the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary to serve as a teaching foundation, taking the name Marie Rose; she was joined by two other women, and the three formed the basis of the new congregation. Between February 1844 and October 1849 the Sisters established four convents (in Longueuil, Belœil, Saint Lin and Saint Timothée) employing 30 teachers and enrolling 448 pupils. The Sisters developed a course of study that provided equally for English and French pupils. Originally the Sisters had planned to teach only girls but their missionary requirements eventually forced them to teach boys in some provinces. Eventually the schools expanded to other parts of Canada, and to the United States, Lesotho, and South America. Mother Durocher was beatified in 1982; if you know of any miracles that can be attributed to her intercession, please contact the Vatican. Finally, today we honor Servant of God Terence Cook, Bishop (died 1983). Born in 1921 in New York City, New York, his parents were both from County Galway, Ireland, and named their son after Terence MacSwiney, the Lord Mayor of Cork who died on a hunger strike during the Irish War of Independence. His father also worked as a chauffeur and construction worker. At age 5, he and his family moved from Morningside Heights, Manhattan, to the northeast Bronx. Following his mother’s death in 1930, his aunt helped raise him and his older siblings. Cooke, after expressing an early interest in the priesthood, entered the minor seminary of the Archdiocese of New York in 1934. In 1940 he entered St. Joseph’s Seminary in Yonkers. Cooke was ordained a priest by Archbishop Francis Spellman on December 1, 1945. He then served as a chaplain for St. Agatha’s Home for Children until 1947, when he moved to Washington, D.C., to pursue his graduate studies in social work at The Catholic University of America, from which he obtained a Master of Social Work degree in 1949. After he returned to New York, Cooke was then assigned to serve as a curate at St. Athanasius Parish in the Bronx, while also teaching at Fordham University’s School of Social Service, until 1954, when he was appointed Executive Director of the Youth Division of Catholic Charities and procurator of St. Joseph’s Seminary. In 1957 he was appointed by Cardinal Spellman to be his secretary, a position in which he remained until 1965. Cooke was named a Privy Chamberlain of His Holiness on August 13, 1957, and Vice-Chancellor for the Archdiocese in 1958, rising to full Chancellor in 1961. On September 15, 1965, Cooke was appointed an auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York and titular bishop of Summa by Pope Paul VI. He received his episcopal consecration on the following December 13 from Spellman, with Archbishops Joseph Thomas McGucken and John Joseph Maguire serving as co-consecrators, at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. He selected as his episcopal motto: Fiat Voluntas Tua, meaning, “Thy Will Be Done” (Luke 1:38). Cooke played a prominent role in arranging Pope Paul’s visit to New York in October, and became Vicar General of the Archdiocese two days after his consecration, on December 15, 1965. He was diagnosed with acute myelomonocytic leukemia, a form of cancer, that year as well. Following the death of Cardinal Spellman in December 1967, Cooke was named the seventh Archbishop of New York on March 2, 1968. Cooke’s appointment came as a surprise; likely contenders for the post included Fulton J. Sheen, a television personality and Bishop of Rochester; and Archbishop Maguire, who had been Spellman’s coadjutor but did not hold the right to succession. In addition to his duties in New York, he was named Vicar Apostolic for the U.S. Military on April 4, and was installed in both positions at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. That same day, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee, leading to a nationwide wave of riots in more than 100 cities. In response, Cooke went to Harlem to plead for racial peace and later attended King’s funeral. After the death of Robert F. Kennedy, he baptized Kennedy’s youngest child, Rory Kennedy. In 1969 Cooke delivered the benediction at the inauguration of President Richard Nixon. Cooke helped implement the reforms of the Second Vatican Council in the Archdiocese, and adopted a more conciliatory managerial style than his predecessor, Cardinal Spellman. Pope Paul VI created him Cardinal-Priest of Santi Giovanni e Paolo, Rome (the traditional titular church of the New York archbishops starting in 1946) in the consistory of April 28, 1969. At the time of his elevation, he was the second youngest member of the College of Cardinals after Alfred Bengsch, who was six months younger than Cooke. Cooke was theologically conservative but progressive in secular matters. During his tenure as archbishop, Cooke founded nine nursing homes; Birthright, which offers women alternatives to abortion; the Inner-City Scholarship Fund, which provides financial aid for inner-city Catholic schools; an Archdiocesan Housing Development Program, providing housing to New York’s disadvantaged; and the Catholic New York, the archdiocesan newspaper. In 1974 he went to the Pontifical North American College in Rome, where he attended lectures on the Second Vatican Council given by his future successor, Edward Egan. His leukemia was deemed terminal in 1975. Cooke was one of the cardinal electors who participated in the conclaves of August and October 1978, which selected Popes John Paul I and John Paul II, respectively. In 1979 he received the Dalai Lama  and Pope John Paul II at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. An anti-Communist, he opposed the majority of his fellow bishops when he spoke out against nuclear disarmament in 1982. He was an outspoken opponent of abortion, and once served as chairman of the Bishops’ Pro-life Committee. He was the founder of Courage International, a ministry that promotes chastity and support for gay and lesbian Catholics. Cooke supported the Cursillo Movement, Christian Family Movement, and Charismatic Renewal, and was instrumental in bringing the Missionaries of Charity to New York. During the 1983 St. Patrick’s Day Parade he remained inside St. Patrick’s Cathedral until the grand marshal, Michael Flannery, an outspoken supporter of the Irish Republican Army, had passed by. In late August 1983, Cooke revealed his illness to the public; he announced that he was expected to live for a few more months, but would not resign his post. He was on almost constant chemotherapy for the last five years of his life. In an open letter completed only days before his death, he wrote, “The gift of life, God’s special gift, is no less beautiful when it is accompanied by illness or weakness, hunger or poverty, mental or physical handicaps, loneliness or old age.” Cooke died from his battle with leukemia in his episcopal residence at age 62, and was interred in the crypt under the altar of St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Soon after his death in 1983, a movement to canonize him as a saint began.  In 1984, with the support of Cooke’s successor, Archbishop (and future cardinal) John Joseph O’Connor, the Cardinal Cooke Guild was established. On April 5, 1984, President Ronald Reagan posthumously awarded Cooke the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In 1988 he was posthumously awarded the F. Sadlier Dinger Award by William H. Sadlier, Inc. for his outstanding contributions to the ministry of religious education in America. The late Reverend Benedict Groeschel, C.F.R., was the postulator for the cause while it was in its initial stages in New York. In 1992 the Congregation for the Causes of Saints officially designated Cooke as a Servant of God, a first step in the canonization process that leads to beatification and then canonization as a saint. On April 14th, 2010, Pope Benedict XVI was presented with the positio, the documentation on the cardinal’s life, work and virtues. The document was then given to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to be examined by theologians. If the document is approved, Cardinal Cooke, who is currently a Servant of God, will receive the title of Venerable, the second step leading to sainthood. If you know of any miracles that can be attributed to him, please contact the Vatican.

I did my Bathroom Devotional Reading, and on our way to work I did my Internet Devotional Reading. Once at the casino we ate breakfast. Once we clocked in, Richard was on Three Card Poker, and I was on Mini Baccarat. I had a busy game going (with one player betting $2000 per hand), but everyone had left by about 6:00 am. On my breaks I did my Book Review for this weblog and for my Goodreads account for The Mauritius Command by Patrick O’Brian via WordPress for Android. That took me so long that I opted not to even try to do my Daily Update for yesterday on my remaining breaks, saving that for later at home. On separate breaks after 8:00 am Richard and I went and got our free flu shot for the year.

On our way home, at 11:15 am, Bonnie called me to tell me that the turkey had just come out of the oven at Lele’s and that we could come on over; I told her that we were on our way home, but would arrive as soon as we could. We then had a flurry of phone calls on my phone and Richard’s phone; and I found out that Bonnie had called Richard’s phone last night, when he was sleeping, but that he had forgotten to call her after about 9:00 am today. We found out that Bonnie would have to leave for Baton Rouge at 12:30 pm or 1:00 pm, to help her and Richard’s sister Susan with moving their brother Butch to the elder care home. When we came into town we stopped at the bank, finished the paperwork for our vacation loan, and had our vacation loan deposited into our checking account; Richard also cashed a check we had gotten in the mail from United Health Care.

Once home, I read the morning paper, then we went over to Lele’s house. Bonnie was there, along with Matthew, Callie, the baby, and Michelle (who had picked up Matthew and Callie and the baby at Lisa’s house). We visited and ate lunch, then, after some discussion, when Bonnie left for Baton Rouge, Richard left with her, driving the truck, to help with convincing Butch that moving is what he needs to do. I stayed at Lele’s, and later, Richard’s brother Slug and his wife Rosemary came over. At 3:00 pm Michelle, Matthew, Callie, the baby, and I left, with Michelle giving me a ride back to the house.

Back home again, I got on the computer, and managed to post my book review on The Mauritius Command by Patrick O’Brian to Facebook. I then did my Daily Update for yesterday, Monday, October 5th, 2015, then did Advance Daily Update Drafts for this weblog through Friday, October 23rd. I then decided to do today’s Daily Update, and then to climb into bed to start reading Desolation Island by Patrick O’Brian before going to sleep, as it has been a long day. I just heard from Richard; he spent the afternoon and early evening moving Butch’s stuff into the new place and talking with his siblings Susan, Bonnie, and Nita, and now he is on his way home, and told me not to wait up for him.

Tomorrow is the Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary. I will try to wake up with my alarm clock, do the Weekly Computer Maintenance, and do my laundry. Richard and I were planning to go to Lafayette, but if he is still doing family stuff relative to moving Butch, I will instead work on Advance Daily Update Drafts.

Our Parting Quote this Tuesday evening comes to us from Marian Seldes, American actress. Born in 1928 in Manhattan, New York City, New York, her mother was a socialite and her father was a journalist, author, and editor. Her uncle was journalist George Seldes, and her maternal aunt was Marian Wells Hall, a prominent interior decorator. She and her brother grew up in a creative environment, studying acting at the Neighborhood Playhouse. Seldes made her Broadway theatre debut in 1948 in a production of Medea. Her television debut was in 1950, playing Emily Brontë in the television movie My Sister Emily, and her movie debut was in The Light in the Forest (1958). At some point she married, had a daughter, and divorced in 1961. In the mid-1960s, Seldes recorded five albums for Folkways Records of famous works of literature. In 1967 she won the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for A Delicate Balance. Seldes was a member of the drama faculty of The Juilliard School from 1967 to 1991. Her students included Christopher Reeve, Robin Williams, Kelsey Grammer, Kevin Kline, William Hurt, Patti LuPone, Val Kilmer, and Kevin Spacey. She was nominated in 1971 for a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for Father’s Day, and won the 1971 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Performance for the same play. Between 1974 and 1982, she appeared in 179 episodes of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater. She was nominated for a Tony Award in 1978 for Best Featured Actress in a Play for Iran Levin’s Deathtrap; Seldes appeared in every one of the 1,809 Broadway performances, a feat that earned her a mention in the Guinness Book of World Records as “most durable actress.” In 1983 she won the Outer Circle Critics Award for Best Actress in a Play for Painting Churches. Seldes was nominated the 1998 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play for Ivanov. The next year she was nominated for the 1999 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play and the 1999 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for Ring Round the Moon. Seldes was married to screenwriter / playwright Garson Kanin in 1990. In 1992 she appeared on an episode of Murphy Brown as Brown’s eccentric Aunt Brooke. Her husband died in 1999. In 2001 she was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play for The Butterfly Collection, and was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actress in a Play for The Play About the Baby. In 2002 Seldes began teaching at Fordham University, Lincoln Center. Seldes was also well known for her readings of short stories in the “Selected Shorts” series hosted by Isaiah Sheffer at New York City’s Symphony Space. She was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for 2003’s Dinner at Eight, and in 2005 was nominated for a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play for Dedication or The Stuff of Dreams. In December 2008, for their annual birthday celebration to “The Master”, The Noël Coward Society invited Seldes as the guest celebrity to lay flowers in front of Coward’s statue at New York’s Gershwin Theatre, thereby commemorating the 109th birthday of Sir Noël.  Seldes was the recipient of a 2010 Antoinette Perry (“Tony”) Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2012 she played a knife-wielding socialite Mabel Billingsly in the film adaptation of Wendy Mass’s popular children’s book Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life, written and directed by Tamar Halpern (died 2014): “All I’ve done is live my life in the theater and loved it. If you can get an award for being happy, that’s what I’ve got.”

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