San Francisco, Calif., Aug 14, 2005 / 22:00 pm
Nearly 2,300 well-wishers turned out Saturday night to bid farewell to San Francisco Archbishop William Levada as he heads to Rome to become head of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, a post formerly held by Pope Benedict XVI.
Mayor Gavin Newsom presented the Archbishop with a trolley bell to remember the city by and encouraged him to think of the “city by the bay” whenever he hears the bells of St. Peter’s Basilica.
Other tributes included videotaped messages from President George W. Bush and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger during the $150 a plate charity farewell dinner, which raised funds for the Alliance of Mission District Catholic Schools.
The 69 year old prelate will replace then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Benedict XVI, and become the highest-ranking American ever to hold a position in the Vatican.