Solemn Dedication of St. Columba's Cathedral in Oban
The Solemn Dedication of St. Columba's, Cathedral of the Diocese of Argyll
and the Isles will take place this evening at a Mass concelebrated by all
the Catholic bishops of Scotland.
Cardinal Keith O'Brien will preside at the Mass during which a short liturgy
will take place in which the altar and walls of the Cathedral (completed in
1953) will be anointed with oil of chrism and the altar will be incensed.
Lastly. Lamps will be lit at the places where the cathedral walls were
The ceremony takes place the day before the feast of St. Columba (9 June)
but could not be held on the same day since the dedication of a Cathedral is
a Solemnity in its own right which cannot coincide with another.
The dedication liturgy part of which will be in Gaelic (Responsorial Psalm
and 2nd Reading) will conclude with a presentation by Cardinal O'Brien of a
blessing from Pope John Paul II to the Diocese marking the Solemn
Principal Celebrant and Bishop of Argyll and the Isles Bishop Ian Murray in
his homily, noted;
"What we are celebrating is a solemn act of dedication on three levels.
First of all, we are dedicating this building to the exclusive service and
worship of God. Secondly, we, the community of believers make up the
Mystical Body of Christ, are re-dedicating ourselves as the temple of the
New Testament. Lastly we are re-dedicating ourselves to the worship and
service of God, for everyone who has been baptised has been made a temple of
Bishop Murray added;
"As we anoint the walls of the Cathedral with chrism let us remember how we
too are anointed with that same sacred oil in Baptism, in Confirmation in
Holy Orders as a sign of the in pouring of the Holy Spirit.
Let us thank God for the blessings he has stowed on us down the years. We
remember, too, with gratitude, the past generations who have worshipped in
all our churches and have gone before us in leaving us a rich heritage of
Faith and we offer ourselves once more to the service of God and of our
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