What a great story by Bill Hagan (CNY, March 12). As an active duty and retired New York City police officer, with responsibilities that included security of St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the Cardinal’s residence, I am sure through personal experience that it was a great honor for Bill to be invited into the residence by His Eminence for lunch after Mass.
I too have fond memories of Cardinal Edward Egan. In late 1988, many of us were meeting our new bishop on his installation. At the time, he was Bishop Edward Egan, the new bishop of the Diocese of Bridgeport, Conn. To some people he seemed a little shy, to others slightly aloof or too businesslike. What we had actually was a highly educated, cultured shepherd getting to know his new flock. Before long he endeared himself to his priests and laity alike.
When Bishop Egan was elevated to be Archbishop of New York, he invited me to the canonical possession ceremony, and his installation as archbishop. It was my good fortune to receive yearly invitations to Christmas Midnight Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The first year I attended, I had a good seat. As the cardinal processed by, I snapped his photo. It came out very good, so I sent him a copy. His secretary soon called and said the cardinal wanted to speak with me. The cardinal said he would like to use my photo for his new prayer card. To say I was pleased was an understatement.
Cardinal Egan was quite a man, who never forgot his friends and associates from his former diocese.