Archbishop Dennis Schnurr, Papal Artifacts takes great pleasure in remembering your 48th anniversary of ordination. Thank you for the gift of your life to our Church!
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Celebrating the June 19, 2021, 200th Anniversary of the Diocese of Cincinnati
Cincinnati archdiocese celebrates 200 years, looks forward
By Jonah McKeown
Denver Newsroom, Jun 18, 2021 / 11:33 am
On June 19, the Archdiocese of Cincinnati celebrated its bicentennial with a Solemn Mass of Thanksgiving offered by Archbishop Dennis Schnurr at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Peter in Chains.
At the Mass, Schnurr re-consecrated the archdiocese to Jesus through Mary. In his homily, he reflected on the growth and successes of the archdiocese in the 200 years since its founding. He also encouraged the faithful to continue the work of the Church by asking: “What in God’s plan must we do next?”
“The care and affection of God for His people of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati that we celebrate today is not unique to us. It is part of God’s constant providence,” Archbishop Schnurr said in his homily.
“It is what has been going on from the very beginning. Loving and leading and pardoning and protecting and enlightening and enlivening is what God does as a matter of course,” he said, “and that is not going to change.”
Pope Pius VII established the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in June 1821. The archdiocese, only the ninth diocese to be established in the United States at the time, originally encompassed the entirety of Ohio and the present-day state of Michigan, as well as parts of present-day Wisconsin.
When bishop-elect Edward Fenwick set off to take possession of his new diocese at its founding, he faced a difficult journey and had to swim the Kentucky River on his way to Cincinnati, Schnurr said.
Archbishop Schnurr noted that although the territory of the archdiocese has shrunk considerably since its founding, there are twice as many Catholics living in the archdiocese of Cincinnati today – some 440,000 – than resided in the United States in 1821.
“This local Church has welcomed waves of immigrants, dealt with economic depressions and wars, and enjoyed times of unprecedented growth and prosperity,” he said.
“And throughout it all, Our Lord’s teaching has been proclaimed, His sacraments celebrated, and His people bound together in the Body of Christ which is His Church.”
Despite expressing some uncertainty about the future – particularly whether the archdiocese will have enough priests in the coming years – Schnurr proclaimed confidence that God will continue to bless the archdiocese as He has in the past. He also emphasized the responsibility of the faithful to cooperate with God’s grace and support the mission of their local Church.
“[T]o be alive as Church, as an archdiocese, and as the people of God, we must be keenly aware that, regardless of whether we celebrate successes or stress over challenges, what we see today is not the finish line,” he said.
“We are all part of the Lord’s plan for his Kingdom,” he said. “God has given each of us something specific to contribute.”
The Mass was also the culmination of a 33-day archdiocesan pilgrimage for the bicentennial celebrations. Beginning on May 16, participants walked over 300 miles with a statue of Our Lady of Fatima, ending at the cathedral basilica in time for the Mass. Pilgrims signed up for three-day walking shifts for the pilgrimage, and made stops at 36 parishes throughout the archdiocese.
Ordination Cards in the Papal Artifacts’ Collection
Happy Anniversary to Our Former Bishop!
Dennis Schnurr was born in Sheldon, Ioway to Edward and Eleanor (née Jungers) Schnurr. One of six children, he has two brothers and three sisters. He attended Spalding Catholic High School in Granville before entering Loras College in Dubuque, from where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1970. He later earned a Master’s degree in theology in 1974 from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome.
Schnurr was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Frank Greteman on July 20, 1974 for the Diocese of Sioux City, Iowa. He was an associate pastor at the Cathedral of the Epiphany and at Blessed Sacrament Church until 1977, whence he began his graduate studies at the Catholic University of America, receiving a doctorate in canon law in 1980. He then served as Vice-Chancellor (1980–1981) and Chancellor (1981–1985) of the Diocese of Sioux City, as well as the diocesan finance officer (1980–1985), a judge on the diocesan tribunal (1980–1985), and secretary of the presbyteral council (1981–1985).
In 1985, Schnurr was assigned to the staff of the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington, D.C.. He served as Associate General Secretary of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops/United States Catholic Conference from 1989 to 1995; during his tenure, he supervised those departments dealing with education, domestic and international social policy, and communications. Schnurr organized the 1993 World Youth Day in Denver, Colorado, which was the only time the United States has hosted the event. He was raised to the rank of Prelate of Honor of His Holiness in 1993 as well, and elected general secretary of the NCCB/USCC in 1994.
A product of the NAC and Gregorian named to the Minnesota diocese in 2001, the Iowa-born archbishop first came to wide notice in two national-level assignments during his priesthood: first, his role as executive director for 1993’s World Youth Day in Denver, a year after which he was elevated to general secretary of the US bishops’ conference, where he served until the Duluth appointment. Prior to that, Schnurr — who had been chancellor of his home-diocese of Sioux City by his early 30s — was a local aide on the staff of the Apostolic Nunciature in Washington. He is also, for the second time, treasurer of the USCCB, a term that will end in 2019.
Archbishop Schnurr reported that the number of seminarians studying for Cincinnati is 54 and will likely exceed 60 next year, which is a cause for great joy, both for Cincinnati and for him.
The Diocese of Duluth extends its gratitude for the gift of his life to our local Church and wishes him all the best in the year to come.
March 9, 1471: Cardinal Francesco della Rovere, the Future Pope Sixtus IV, Writes and Signs a Pandering Letter, & An Interesting Story about the Letter’s Location Today!
This is a letter dated March 9, 1471, written in Rome in the year Sixtus IV was elected pope. The content concerns a prince in Venice and two of his cardinals. It is a “pandering” letter: the Cardinal is trying to exert his influence on this senator in Venice who had authority over certain cardinals. The Cardinal was utilizing flattery because the election was getting closer.
This item has an interesting story.
Father Kunst gave this as a parting gift to Duluth, Minnesota’s Bishop Dennis Schnurr, presently the Archbishop of Cincinnati, Ohio, and a close friend of his. The letter was written when Sixtus IV was Cardinal Francesco della Rovere, the cardinal of the Church of St. Peter in Chains in Rome.
This is the name of the cathedral in Cincinnati, Ohio where Archbishop Schnurr is presently serving.