Bishop D’Arcy started thinking about the priesthood when he was in high school. The choice to live a religious life was always something close to his heart.
“You never know…being called into the priesthood…depends on the grace of God,” he said.
“Our parish church where I grew up in Boston was a big part. My parents were also a big part—the joy in our home and the joy from giving to others.”
“Joy is not something you seek, but something which comes from a life well lived. A life of putting one’s own will in second place.”
On February 2, 1957, Bishop D’Arcy was officially ordained into the priesthood. Now 50 years later he celebrates with joy and thanksgiving.
A long-standing applause ended the 50th anniversary celebration of Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Following, a reception and dinner was held at the Grand Wayne Center located across from the Cathedral.
Bishop D’Arcy had asked that there be no personal gifts at his celebration. However, Father Robert Schulte, diocesan vicar general and rector of the Cathedral presented a cross from Our Lady of the Presentation Church in Brighton, Massachusetts, the home parish of Bishop D’Arcy which is now closed. The cross hangs near the choir loft.
Priests of the diocese made a $3,000 donation to the Catholic Education Fund to assist students financially.
He was presented a chalice and paten “in recognition and thanksgiving for the many times you have offered Mass, not only in our cathedrals, but also in our parishes, schools, hospitals, and many other places,” said spokesman Schulte.
In addition, presented at the reception was a 6′ x 4′ gift that stood behind the podium. It was the Bishop’s Coat of Arms. (A smaller version is displayed on the bishop’s cathedra.)
This is a piece handed down from previous bishops. Today it depicts the coat of arms of Bishop D’Arcy together on the same shield with the arms of the Fort Wayne-South Bend Diocese.
The personal life and values of the Bishop are on the right side. A few of the things depicted are praying hands, an eagle’s head doning a halo-denoting St. John the Evangelist and, recalling the years the bishop has spent at St. John’s Seminary, Brighton, Massachusetts as student, teacher and spiritual director. As well as, the baptismal patron of the bishop.
There are 2 crescents. One refers to Mary and his years spent at St. Mary Star of the Sea Parish in Beverly, Massachusetts. The other crescent symbolizes the Church–sacrament of Christ.
The new Coat of Arms was hand lettered by Waynedale’s Diane McIntosh.
“Mark Weber from Today’s Catholic asked me if I would work on this project.”
“I told Mark that it would be an honor to be able to do this type of art,” commented Diane, who has been sign painting since she was a teenager.
“Starting with a paper pattern you get the design,” she said.
After painting the background Diane proceeds to lettering with enamels.
“Not many artists letter by hand these days. It is almost a lost art.”
The shield is of the Irish family—D’Arcy.
The 6-pointed star from the bishop’s mother-the Moran family.
For the bishop’s motto, depicted on the scroll below the shield, is Psalm 118 and 136: “His steadfast love endures forever.”
McIntosh worked arduously for 18-20 hours in her shop on Lower Huntington Road to keep the tradition alive.
“Everything God gives us is a gift—our health, our creation, the life of grace. God has given us all these things,” said the most Reverend Bishop D’Arcy thanking everyone.
Today, as the eighth bishop of the Fort Wayne-South Bend Diocese, Bishop D’Arcy said that the biggest gift of all is to joyfully be able to continue to serve his flock, as shepherd, touching and shaping tens of thousands of lives, from birth to baptism, through confirmation to marriage and death.
Joining Bishop D’Arcy on this very special Sunday was Archbishop Daniel Buechlein, OSB, of Indianapolis; Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, of Peoria; Bishop Dale J. Melczek of Gary; Bishop Carl F. Mengeling of Lansing; Bishop Robert J. Banks retired bishop of Green Bay, Wisconsin; the superior and priests from the Congregation of Holy Cross, Conventual Franciscan friars from Mishawaka, diocesan priests and priest-friends from New England, as well as the Bishop’s three sisters, nephews, nieces, great-nephews and nieces, friends, and parishioners.
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