Catholic children celebrate cathedral with procession


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SALT LAKE CITY -- A representative from the Vatican spoke and hundreds of Catholic school children Friday night as part of the week-long series of events celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Cathedral of the Madeleine. But before the service, there as the processional made its way into the cathedral.

With banners representing their schools and parishes, hundreds of children processed through downtown Salt Lake City to honor their cathedral's centennial.

Manny Larios, of St. Francis Xavier Parish in Kearns, said "I like my religion, and it's a great honor to actually do this."

The event was a reenactment of a procession that happened exactly 100 years ago.

"We're replicating what the historical record said took place on that day, when all of the children of the city went in procession with the bishop to the new cathedral," said The Rev. Monsignor Joseph Mayo, Pastor of the Cathedral of the Madeleine.

The Catholic children gathered at the Cathedral Church of St. Mark, which belongs to the Episcopal Diocese.

"It's very exciting to have our Roman Catholic brothers and sisters here at this cathedral," said The Rev. Rick Lawson, Rector of the Cathedral Church of St. Mark. "And this is a good place to start out because, for both of us, because literally, right behind here was where we both started."

At the cathedral, the children participated in Solemn Vespers; the guest of honor came from the Vatican, Cardinal Levada. Former bishop, now Archbishop of San Francisco, the Most Rev. George H. Niederauer spoke.

"The Holy Spirit has been building up the Church in Utah out of the living stones of generations of faithful and faith-filled Catholics," Archbishop Niederaur said.

A special thank you went from The Most Rev. Bishop John C. Wester to the children for participating so well in the faith's historic events.

Cardinal Levada will deliver the Homily, or sermon, at Saturday's solemn Mass--on the anniversary of the cathedral's dedication.

E-mail: cmikita@ksl.com

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