THE 225,000 Catholics of the new Worcester diocese in Massachusetts are rejoicing in its establishment as a revival in the New World of the diocese lost to the Church when the Reformation struck England.
" Canterbury and York have been lost to us and the Worcester of old, said Archbishop Cushing, of Boston, when he preached at the enthronement last week of the first Bishop, 40-year Mgr. John Wright.
" But this Worcester of the New World arises this morning as a cathedral town to perpetuate a name once so glorious in the Catholic Church.
" The first Bishop of the Worcester of the West takes up a crozier like that laid down by the last Bishop of the Worcester of the Old-World. Richard Pates, in 1565.
" Thus does God in His own good time and place renovate His losses of the past."
PAGES OF NEWS
The Everting Gazette. a local daily, devoted six fullpages to the enthronement, pointing out that Worcester has seen episodes which typify the rise of Catholic fortunes in early New England.
Some of the first Catholics in Worcester, it recalls, were a group of the unfortunate Acadians driven out of their Nova Scotia homes by the English. Early in the 1800'i came a colony of immigrant Irish canal workers. in 1834, when a priest tried to buy a site for a church he could not get the legal papers completed because of bigotry.
But from that time on the Irish Catholic population of Worcester grew tremendously.
Holy Cross College was founded in 1843. In 1869 a church for French-American Catholics was built, in 1894 one for Lithuanian Catholics, in 1903 one for Polish Catholics, and in 1906 one for Italian Catholics.
The Catholic Church is now by far the largest religious denomination in the area.
The tolling of a newly installed 2,500-pound bell in St. Paul's Cathedral tower signalled the rite of installation. 'Some 900 members of the clergy marched in the procession to the cathedral. Civil officials and the Bishop's parents, Mr. and Mrs. John J. Wright, of Mattapan, Mass.. were among the witnesses. Twenty thousand peope crowded round the cathedral for the enthronement ceremony. and saw 900 priests enter in procession.
Bishop Wright was secretary to Cardinal O'Connell, Archbishop of Boston. He was consecrated as Auxiliary of Boston when he was 36.