CARDINAL William Levada, a senior Vatican figure, has called on the Catholics of Queensland to “take pride in your new seminary, and take pride in your priests”.
Cardinal Levada, who is Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, blessed and opened the new Holy Spirit Seminary at Banyo in Brisbane last weekend.
The seminary serves the province of Queensland, covering the Cairns, Rockhampton, Townsville and Toowoomba dioceses as well as Brisbane archdiocese.
About 500 people of all ages attended the blessing and opening on the Saturday of last weekend.
Among them were representatives from all Queensland dioceses, with the bishops – Archbishop John Bathersby of Brisbane and his auxiliaries Bishop Brian Finnigan and Bishop Joseph Oudeman, Bishop James Foley of Cairns, Bishop Michael Putney of Townsville and Bishop Brian Heenan of Rockhampton – joined by clergy, religious and lay people from their regions.
Other guests included apostolic nuncio to Australia Archbishop Giuseppe Lazzarotto; Bishop Peter Ingham of Wollongong; retired Bishop of Townsville Bishop Raymond Benjamin; retired Bishop John Gerry of Brisbane; Anglican Archbishop Philip Aspinall of Brisbane, who is Anglican Primate of Australia; and Moderator of the Uniting Church in Queensland Rev David Pitman.
In his homily during the liturgy for the blessing of the seminary, Cardinal Levada said “the construction of this new seminary is a gesture of confidence and hope for the Church in Australia”.
Preaching at the dedication of the chapel conducted the previous night by Archbishop Bathersby, Cardinal Levada said “convestitum Spiritu Sancto” (“Clothed with the Holy Spirit”) was more than a motto for the seminary.
“It is an expression of the very mystery of our salvation in Christ,” he said.
Archbishop Bathersby, speaking during the official opening, said he was “certain the new name of the seminary will fill us all with fresh hope and encourage us to rely more strongly on the power of the same Spirit as we move forward into the future with renewed energy”.