A True Soldier of Christ
Cardinal George Pell was farewelled in a Solemn Pontifical Mass of Christian Burial at Saint Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney on Thursday, 2 February.
In death, as in life, Cardinal Pell stirred emotions from those who admired and those who reviled him. Little wonder Cardinal Pell was thought to be out-of-line with so called ‘progressives’ because he refused to align his God-given vocation with their apparent hunger for the easy option. Cardinal Pell’s episcopal motto was, ‘Be Not Afraid’.
The Cathedral was filled with capacity with a further two to three thousand mourners watching the Mass live-streamed at the main entrance and its extended area.
Sadly, the funeral was marred by a demonstration across the road from the Cathedral.
The Archbishop of Sydney, Anthony Fisher, was the principal celebrant and spoke both warmly and generously of Cardinal Pell describing him as, ‘a man of courage who inspired others to stand up and be counted in an increasingly Godless world’. What also strongly resonated with all in attendance were the Words of Remembrance delivered by both Cardinal Pell’s brother, David, and former Prime Minister, Tony Abbott.
Mr Pell spoke about his brother’s wrongful imprisonment and that even in the Cardinal’s darkest moments he never rescinded from his love of God, family and country. He also took to task the media and its penchant for a headline built on half-truths, bias and downright dishonesty.
Mr. Abbott spoke both passionately and elegantly describing Cardinal Pell as, “Always thoughtful, often charismatic, occasionally imperious and constantly concerned for the wellbeing of others,” before bestowing on him the title of ‘Australia’s Greatest Ever Catholic’.
As solemn as the occasion invariably was, there is nothing as uplifting as a Catholic Requiem Mass. It delivers solace, hope and gratitude in equal measure for all who seek it. And so it did again for all who came together to show respect and acknowledgment to a true soldier of Christ: Cardinal George Pell.
by Mr John Try, OLR Parishioner in attendance.
Cardinal George Pell Funeral Photo Gallery