.- The Archdiocese of Detroit has launched a “Pallium Blog” to cover Archbishop Allen Vigneron’s reception of the pallium in Rome. The blog includes reports from the archbishop and those accompanying him to Rome, including his two young nephews and a woman who runs a Detroit Italian restaurant.
The first entry of the blog, which is titled “A Shepherd’s Mission,” consisted of a letter from Archbishop Vigneron explaining the nature and purpose of the pallium, a narrow band or collar of white wool with six black crosses.
A pallium is worn at Mass by an archbishop who heads an Ecclesiastical Province. The garment signifies his leadership and authority. It is bestowed upon archbishops by the Pope at a ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica on June 29, the Solemnity of the Apostles Sts. Peter and Paul.
“For me, this event is one of the great graces of my priesthood,” Archbishop Vigneron wrote of the upcoming ceremony. “As I kneel on the platform over St. Peter’s Tomb, I will be begging for two things from God: first that He strengthen me to be a good shepherd of His people; and second, that He help all of you and your families to grow in that same life and holiness that the Apostles handed on to us from Jesus.”
He also asked the faithful of Detroit to pray for him.
In other entries on “A Shepherd’s Mission,” the archbishop reflects on returning to see places in Rome such as the North American College, where he was a seminarian for four years.
Other contributors to the blog include pilgrim Lidia Improta, a Detroit laywoman who runs Vince’s Italian Restaurant with her husband Frank.
“I would say to the people reading the blog that they need to pray for the archbishop, and all the bishops and priests especially, that they can be good leaders in the Catholic Church!” she wrote in a June 24 entry.
Garret and Griffin Vigneron, young nephews of the archbishop, also have an entry on the blog.
“We are excited that our uncle will be receiving his Pallium at St. Peter’s next week and we feel honored to be invited,” they wrote. “This will be our first time in Italy and are looking forward to visiting historic places in Rome. Our first stop will hopefully be the Colosseum on Friday, before the events with Uncle Al.”
The archdiocese explained that the blog was a way for readers to receive updates from the archbishop and his fellow pilgrims.
“We encourage you to participate here, send in your questions and comments, and to follow along as we prepare for the journey,” it wrote in a June 19 posting.
The blog is located at http://aodonline.wordpress.com/.
Other U.S. prelates who will receive a pallium include Archbishops Robert Carlson of St. Louis, George Lucas of Omaha, Gregory Aymond of New Orleans and Timothy Dolan of New York.
International prelates receiving their pallium include Archbishops Vincent Nichols of Westminster, Orani Tempesta of Rio de Janiero, Giuseppe Betori of Florence, Michael Miller of Vancouver, Pierre-Andre Fournier of Rimouski, Quebec and Archbishop of Lviv Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki.