In Your Midst


July 2003

In This Issue:
Three years ago I think all of us felt a certain sense of privilege, and maybe even of destiny, as we made the move into a new millennium as well as a new century. Few people throughout history have had that opportunity.

In the coming year, 2004, we at St. James Cathedral are destined to enjoy a similar privilege as we mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of our parish. Three years later, in 2007, the cathedral itself will be 100 years old. In light of these fast-approaching mile-stone events, it would not be overstating things to say that we have some serious celebrating to do in our immediate future!

One hundred years is certainly not a long time in the history of the Catholic Church, but in the history of the Catholic Church in the Pacific Northwest—a history that reaches back only to 1850—100 years qualifies as quite a long time.

In the coming months and years, we will take advantage of In Your Midst—and of many other means— to share with you—and to celebrate—some of the rich history of our parish and of our cathedral. It promises to be both fun and interesting!

Hanley, Noonan, Stafford, O’Neill, Gallagher, Gill, Gallagher, and Ryan!

For the moment, let me share with you one little bit of centennial trivia. In 100 years, St. James Cathedral has had only eight pastors and every one of them has had an Irish surname! The list of them could be an Irish Litany of the Saints (or maybe an Irish law firm?): Hanley, Noonan, Stafford, O’Neill, Gallagher, Gill, Gallagher, and Ryan! Photographs of each of these gentlemen (with the exception of the last) are hanging along the north wall of the Gallagher Center. Some of them look like they came straight out of central casting. Each of them made a significant contribution to the life of this parish.

But with due respect to my own Irish heritage, something tells me that the pastors’ names of the second hundred years will read quite differently than those of the first. We are a far more multi-cultural Church in 2003 than we ever were in 1903, and we with the Irish surnames will undoubtedly have to move over and make room for a whole new alphabet of names. In the meantime, in future issues we will take advantage of the Cathedral Centennial celebration to introduce you to the estimable Irishmen who pastored the Cathedral in its first hundred years.

Father Michael G. Ryan

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