by Tablet Staff
MIDTOWN — The 262nd New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade stepped off from the front of the cathedral that bears his name, following a Mass celebrated by Cardinal Timothy Dolan before a sanctuary packed with Catholic clergy, local dignitaries, religious, representatives of the military, and faithful.
Cardinal Dolan opened his remarks by greeting a long list of guests that included State Attorney General Letitia James, Mayor Eric Adams, and several concelebrants, including Bishop Robert Brennan, Bishop John Barres of the Diocese of Rockville Centre, and homilist Msgr. Kieran Harrington, a former clergyman in the Diocese of Brooklyn who now serves as the national director of the Pontifical Mission Societies.
“It’s a grand day for Ireland, a grand day for New York City, for America, and for the Irish diaspora worldwide,” Cardinal Dolan proclaimed. “Made all the more grand by your gracious company. Fellow Irish one and all, what better way to commence this grand feast day than with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.”
After the Gospel reading, Luke 5:1-11, telling the tale of how Jesus directed his disciples to put down their fish nets and how they hauled in an astonishing amount of fish, then pulled their boats ashore, left everything, and followed him, Msgr. Harrington delivered a homily suggesting that “the takeaway might be the willingness of the disciples to take a risk of faith.
“Patrick took that risk of faith by returning to a country where he was enslaved,” Msgr. Harrington said. “He took the risk of death because of his commitment to peace. The reason why we are here is because of the faith of that man.
“[Pope] Francis reminds us that all of us are called to be like Patrick: missionary disciples,” Msgr. Harrington concluded.