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Bishop installation liturgy: what to expect

Although COVID-19 will impact the format of the installation liturgy on Monday, Sept. 14, a festive spirit will certainly be felt as representatives of the Diocese of Cleveland—clergy, religious, and laity—will be present in Saint John’s Cathedral at 2:00pm. The rest of our diocesan community will have the opportunity to participate via livestream.

While the ceremony will last for approximately two hours, the installation itself is rather brief as most of it occurs at the beginning of the eucharistic liturgy. 

At the beginning of the Mass is the ceremonial welcome of Bishop Malesic to his cathedral church. He will be welcomed by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, Pope Francis’ apostolic nuncio for the United States, and Archbishop Dennis Schnurr, metropolitan of the Province of Ohio, along with members of the diocesan staff.  The rector of the cathedral will present a crucifix which Bishop Malesic kisses and then the bishop will sprinkle himself and those around him with holy water.  The entrance procession continues and is followed by the rite of installation itself.

The rite of canonical installation consists of four components. First, the nuncio will present and read Pope Francis’ apostolic letter of appointment. Next, a diocesan representative will show the letter to other diocesan officials and representatives of the assembly. Following the presentation, Archbishops Pierre and Schnurr will lead Bishop Malesic to his cathedra (chair) where, once seated, the Twelfth Bishop of Cleveland officially takes possession of his diocese and assumes his ministry as shepherd of the community of nearly 700,000 Catholics in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Lake, Geauga, Summit, Wayne, Medina, and Ashland counties.

With readings and prayers for this special occasion, the Mass will continue with Bishop Malesic serving as the principal celebrant.