MERIDEN, CT (07-07-2018) – The Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist have known His Eminence Jean-Louis Cardinal Tauran as a wise and trusted man of the Church, a close collaborator, and an esteemed friend. Two of our Sisters, Sister Catherine Mary Clarke, FSE and Sister Judith Zoebelein, FSE had the opportunity to experience Cardinal Tauran’s gracious leadership in their work in the Vatican Apostolic Library and the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue respectively.
In mid-June, while visiting the Community’s motherhouse where he was scheduled to present a talk on inter-religious dialogue and enjoy a few days of quiet retreat, Cardinal Tauran became gravely ill and was hospitalized. His Eminence entered eternal life on July 5, 2018.
As a friend, Cardinal Tauran has visited the Franciscan motherhouse in Meriden on occasion. In 2009, he celebrated Palm Sunday Mass in the Sisters’ all-purpose room as their chapel was too small to accommodate the worshipers. After Mass he encouraged the Sisters to build a new, larger chapel and promised to be the celebrant at its dedication, whenever that might be. In 2014, his suggestion became a reality and, true to his promise, Cardinal Tauran was the principal celebrant at the Mass of dedication with concelebrants Archbishop Leonard P. Blair, Archbishop Emeritus Daniel A. Cronin and many priest friends. In 2011, the Cardinal paid a visit to the motherhouse at the time of the Sisters’ annual Franciscan Sports Banquet fundraising event, and led the opening prayer for the 600 people present.
As the President of the Council on Inter-religious Dialogue at the Vatican, Cardinal Tauran has served the Catholic Church in fostering mutual respect among persons of different religions. He has been a strong leader in the Church’s relations with believers of the Muslim faith. His storied years of service in the Church and the world are well documented and well known. Since his death, public tributes to his achievements, his faith, the power and grace of his quiet personality and wry sense of humor, and the world-wide influence of his breakthrough efforts proliferate. A distinguished yet humble servant of the Church has left his mark on cultures and peoples. A veteran diplomat, he carried the message of Christ’s peace to the world faithfully and with pristine integrity.
With one voice, we pray together for the beloved Cardinal:
May the Lord bless you and keep you. May the Lord show His Face to you and be gracious to you. May the Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace. The Lord bless you.