Earlier this week, I had the privilege of attending the Ordination Mass of our newest bishop, Bp. Lee Piche. I'll admit that I've always had a particular affection for the Cathedral, but it was a beautiful Mass by any standards. By my count, there were 15 bishops there (representing 4 out of 6 MN dioceses, and several out-of-state), and enough Knights of Columbus to line both sides of the entire main aisle (side note: who knew that Knights came in so many colors? Red, white, yellow, green, purple...). Archbishop Nienstedt, as usual, started and ended his homily by singing the chorus of a hymn ("We Have Been Told" in this case), and in between, reminded Bishop Piche of the life of service on which he's embarking as he enters the fullness of his vocation. Clocking in at 2hr40min, this was definitely one of the longest Masses I've ever been to, and the Cathedral was so packed that it got a little stifling at times, but the time flew by...in a prayerful kind of way.
As usual, I was most interested in the music (it didn't hurt that we couldn't actually see anything...), and it didn't disappoint. Given how many pieces there were, I was fully expecting to grit my teeth through one or two pieces, but it didn't ever come to that. The Cathedral Choir was joined by choirs from the parishes Bp. Piche has served in the past, as well as the St. Agnes Schola Cantorum (which is directed by the brother of the Bishop of New Ulm...who knew? Well, probably everyone but me.). I'm critical to a fault about liturgical music, but the biggest point of complaint for me was the inclusive language in the psalm (which was otherwise a nice setting). It's also worth noting that the Te Deum sung as Bp. Piche blessed the congregation was the first setting of that text that hasn't irked me. (I have a whole theory on Te Deums, but that's a topic for another day.) In fact, it was downright beautiful!
The Book of Gospels is placed on the new bishop's head.
Not a great picture, thanks to our mediocre seat, but a pretty cool moment.
Mass for the Episcopal Ordination of Lee Piche
as Auxiliary Bishop of Saint Paul-Minneapolis
on the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul
Toccata, Adagio, and Fugue in C (Bach)
Cantate Domino (Hassler)
Laudate Pueri (Victoria) - instrumental
Ave Maria (Victoria)
Behold, a New Creation (Biery)
By All Your Saints Still Striving
Gloria from New Mass for Congregations (Andrews)
Rite of Ordination:
Veni Creator Spiritus (Chant, with choral verses)
Set Me As a Seal Upon Your Heart (Clausen)
Mass for the City (Proulx)
Choral setting (Blasius Amon)
Antiphon: Tu es Petrus (Plainchant)
If Ye Love Me (Tallis)
Psalm 79 (Biery)
Ave Verum Corpus (Mozart)
Hymn of Thanksgiving/Blessing by Bp. Piche:
Te Deum (Victoria)
Father, We Thank Thee Who Hast Planted