"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
Wednesday, June 26, 2002 Here's to the North American College
The appointment of Bishop Timothy Dolan, former rector of the Pontifical North American College in Rome, as archbishop of Milwaukee has been widely praised. "Serious yet sociable, scholarly yet jolly, natural leader arrives," runs the headline in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "Larger than life," is how his former student, Fr. Jim Tucker, describes Monsignor Dolan:
He was perfectly comfortable slapping the backs of visiting cardinals and wining and dining the steady stream of big-wigs who came to visit, but the blue-collar man from Missouri was always just below the surface. His job as rector of the American College required diplomacy and carefully measured gestures, but his personal style was always to the point, concrete, and often quite blunt. His thoughtfulness and care for details impressed me, and he had a way of remembering the most obscure facts about people.
Monsignor Dolan was a complete character, and so he was a natural target when seminarians did skits imitating the faculty or when a guy wanted to try his hand at impersonation. There was Dolan pacing the halls, a cigar in one hand and his rosary in the other. There was Dolan hammering home the points of his rector's conferences, mopping the copious sweat from his ruddy face, his abundant belly straining against the purple buttons of his soutane. There was Dolan in his sweatsuit on a Sunday morning, scrounging around the corridor kitchens for any fresh pancakes or leftover cornetti. There was Dolan rallying the troops in his superb preaching style, "Duc in altum! Set out into the deep, as the Lord told His first priests. Our hearts are His, gentlemen, and His alone: if you can't give yourself completely over to the service of the Lord, well, this isn't the kind of life for you, and it's probably time for you to take a trip to the trunk room."
This is great copy. And when you consider the North American College under the watch of this great colorful character produced such talents as Father Tucker and fellow talented wordsmith Father Bryce Sibley, you have reason to marvel – and hope.