-TIMS-UNION PHOTO BY NANCY POWEU
Dozens of Priests March in Procession into Church
Minor Basilica Ceremony
Draws Over a Thousand
By NANCY POWELL
Times-Union Staff Writer
ST. AUGUSTINE Over 1,000 at-
tended a mass at the Cathedral of St. Au-
gustine Wednesday marking the designa-
tion of the church as a "Minor Basilica."
Dozens of priests, robed in white vest-
ments embossed with gold crosses,
marched in the procession into the church
for the 11 a.m. ceremonies.
Bishop Paul Tanner, bishop of the
Diocese of St. Augustine was the main con-
celebrant at the liturgy. The Cathedral
was designated to become the 24th minor
basilica in the nation last year by Pope
Paul IV at the request of Bishop Tanner'
during the nation's 200th birthday celebra-
Msgr. Harold Jordan, rector of the
Cathedral, translated segments from the
Latin plaque which recalls the landing of
the first Spanish missionaries here 411
years ago on the day of the feast of St. Au-
"Years have got blurred the dignity of
this event," he read.
The plaque recognizes the Cathedral
as a "hallmark of the city as well as the
Joining Bishop Tanner in the celebra-
tion were Archbishop Edward S. McCar-
thy, Miami; Bishop Charles McLaughlin,
St. Petersburg; Bishop Thomas Grady, Or-
/lando; and Bishop Rene H. Gracide of
Bishop John J. Fitzpatrick, of
Brownsville, Tex., who served the Florida
church 25 years, gave the homily.
Bishop Fitzpatrick said the 200 year-
old Cathedral was elevated to basilica sta-
tus as the "result of man's belief in the
"Despite the shortage of priests and
sisters and upsetting changes, this is a his-
toric and glorious time for our church," he
A slab of marble bearing the basilica
coat of arms will be placed in the church
at a later date.
FLORIDA TIMES UNION SEPT. 23, 1977