Friday, October 22, 2010

Who would have thunk it? Fargo once had a Cardinal!

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With all this talk of the creation of 24 new Cardinals, Fr. Z threw a proposal into the internet ionosphere that the Pope should now and then appoint deserving bishops from dioceses that weren't traditionally held by cardinals. The names of Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City, MO and Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver were quickly tossed up for discussion.

And then it was mentioned that Fargo, our Fargo, yes, that Fargo of the movie, once had a cardinal of its own [for a millisecond].

A priest of the Diocese of Milwaukee, he studied in Switzerland and Louvain (when it was orthodoz) and was appointed Bishop of Fargo by Pope Pius XI in 1935.

Wikipedia: "Pope Pius XII appointed Muench apostolic visitor to Germany in 1946. From 1946 to 1949, he served as military vicar delegate of the United States armed forces, and from 1949 to 1951, he was the regent of the nunciature in Germany. Muench also served as "liaison consultant for religious affairs to the military governor", appointed by Secretary of War, Robert P. Patterson.[8] The German nunciature had been vacant since the death of Cesare Orsenigo in 1946. Muench assumed the de facto role of nuncio before he received the title on March 6, 1951.[8]" This was in addition to his duties as Bishop of Fargo.

"Muench's role as apostolic visitor was upgraded to nuncio when the Allied High Commission permitted the Federal Republic to form an independent foreign affairs ministry in March 1951.[31] On March 9, 1951, Pope Pius XII appointed Bishop Muench papal nuncio to Germany with the title of archbishop.[32] Muench viewed it as no small honor to hold the nunciature formerly occupied by Pius XII himself.[20][33] On March 12, Pius XII moved the nunciature from Eichstatt to Bad Godesberg, outside of Bonn. By April 4, 1951, Muench was named dean of the German diplomatic corps, the first diplomat accredited by the Federal Republic.[31]"

"He was elevated cardinal on December 14, 1959 by Pope John XXIII.[37] Muench resigned as Bishop of Fargo on December 9, 1959 just before he became Cardinal. He died in Rome on February 15, 1962 and was buried in Fargo.[38][39]"

As he chose to be buried in Fargo, his "galero", the flat red hat that the cardinals used to wear, is now in the Cathedral of St. Mary in that city. The Fargo seminary is now named after Cardinal Muench.



Aloysius Joseph Cardinal Muench
18 Feb 1889
BornMilwaukee
8 Jun 191324.3Ordained PriestPriest of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
10 Aug 193546.5AppointedBishop of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
15 Oct 193546.7Ordained BishopBishop of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
6 Nov 193546.7InstalledBishop of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
28 Oct 195061.7AppointedArchbishop (Personal Title) of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
9 Mar 195162.1AppointedApostolic Nuncio to Germany
9 Dec 195970.8ResignedBishop of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
9 Dec 195970.8AppointedTitular Archbishop of Selymbria
14 Dec 195970.8Elevated to Cardinal
14 Dec 195970.8AppointedCardinal-Priest of S. Bernardo alle Terme
15 Feb 196273.0DiedBishop Emeritus of Fargo, North Dakota, USA
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