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Archbishop Dolan: Late nuncio ‘saw the cross’

September 15, 2011

Seven cardinals and over six dozen other bishops attended the September 14 memorial Mass for Archbishop Pietro Sambi, who died on July 27.

The Mass for the late apostolic nuncio to the United States was held at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington. Vice President Joseph Biden was among the dignitaries in attendance.

“As Cardinal [Donald] Wuerl, Archbishop [Edwin] O’Brien, and I can verify--since we had the honor of tracing the cross upon him on his deathbed--Pietro Sambi knew the mystery of the cross as well in his final, unexpected illness,” said Archbishop Timothy Dolan, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. “But he had witnessed it too as he saw the cross in his varied diplomatic missions, in the poverty and oppression of peoples, in religious acrimony and war.”

“We bishops of the United States will never forget the warm, personable manner in which he summoned us to be ambassadors of the healing and reconciliation won by Jesus on the cross, and be ever grateful for the tender way he unfailingly responded to our own needs.”


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