Symposium looks back and forward to Year of Faith
Bishop Cummins was moderator of the event, which recognized the connection between the Second Vatican Council and the founding and development of the Diocese of Oakland.
After the symposium, the large crowd gathered in the Plaza for a reception.
josÉ luis aguirrE/The Catholic voice
The celebration of the Diocese of Oakland's 50th anniversary continued Sept. 9 with a lively symposium honoring the Most Rev. John S. Cummins, who served as the bishop of Oakland from 1977 to 2003.
Bishop Cummins served as moderator of the event, which drew about 700 people to the Cathedral of Christ the Light in Oakland for two hours of reflection, both scholarly and personal, on the diocese, which was created in 1962, the same year Pope John XXIII convened the Second Vatican Council.
Many of the reforms of that council are reflected in the culture of the Diocese of Oakland, from liturgical changes to ecumenism to participation of the laity.
Bishop Cummins, who had expressed the desire that the symposium be more than a look back, noted that Pope Benedict XVI, in proclaiming the "Year of Faith," which begins next month, called on the faithful to read the documents of Vatican II and the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
"If ever there was a person who didn't need an introduction it is John Cummins in front of a Catholic audience in Oakland," said Archbishop-designate Salvatore J. Cordileone, who presented a plaque to the bishop emeritus.
"I've been so appreciative of his support and friendship," Archbishop-designate Cordileone said. He recalled a letter that the veteran bishop had sent him when he became a bishop in 2002. "He assured me life would be changed but not ended," he said.
Sister Rose Marie Hennessy, OP
Mary Ann Mattos
Sister Hennessy of the Dominican Sisters of Mission San Jose, and Mattos, vice principal of De La Salle High School in Concord, engaged in a dialogue at the altar, alternately asking and answering questions. They invited members of the audience to reflect on the questions, which included:
• What did you find inspiring and challenging from the early years of Vatican II?
• What were the post-Vatican II movements that have carried and sustained you through your current commitments as wife, mother, educator, parishioner?
• How have you experienced significant leadership in this diocese through the implementation of Vatican II?
• What has given you pause? What gives you hope in the legacy of Vatican II?
Rev. Joseph Chinnici, OFM
Father Chinnici, president of the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, spoke on one of the Vatican Council's documents, "Lumen Gentium."
"Because of its past, the Diocese of Oakland is well-positioned to follow Christ and to appropriate anew the Council as both pastoral and as a call to witness to collegial communion."
Rev. John Coleman, SJ
Father Coleman addressed Gaudium et Spes, the document on the Church in the Modern World. After reading parts of the document, he described examples of the document at work in the diocese over the years.
Examples included a photo of the diocese's first bishop, the Most Rev. Floyd Begin, with evangelist Billy Graham, as an example of ecumenism; Rev. Bill O'Donnell and the struggle for workers' rights, interracial justice and issues of nuclear weapons; Sister Maureen Webb, SNJM and the Respect Life office; Mercy Sisters Housing; and St. Vincent de Paul's work with released prisoners.
Bishop Cummins received a plaque commemorating his service to the diocese.
Father Don Osuna has written a book about the world-recognized music liturgy in the diocese.
A standout crowd of about 700 attended the symposium.
"Cathedral Unity Festival"
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Plaza of the Cathedral of Christ the Light
Following a procession and solemn prayer with Bishop Cummins, enjoy ethnic food and live entertainment on the Cathedral Plaza. Free; open to the public
Wedding Anniversary Mass
For couples celebrating 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 or more years of marriage
Mass at 4 p.m. in the Cathedral of Christ the Light
Information: www.oakanniversary.info or 510-267-8395.
By-invitation event honoring individuals who volunteer their time and talents on diocesan committees and consultative groups.
Hear the symposium
Recordings of the symposium speakers are available at: www.oakdiocese.org/symposium-recordings