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University to have reps at Rome funeral

Heather VanHoegarden | Tuesday, April 5, 2005

Notre Dame will have University representatives at Pope John Paul II’s funeral Friday in Rome, University spokesman Matt Storin confirmed Monday.Storin said the Superior General of the Congregazione Di Santa Croce, Very Reverend Hugh Cleary, his two assistants and Father Carl Ebey will officially represent the University at the funeral, set to take place at 10 a.m. on Friday in Rome. At Notre Dame, that is equivalent to 4 a.m. on Friday.Storin said Ebey, the procurator general of the Congregation, is a former Notre Dame accounting professor. Cleary is, in effect, the University’s permanent representative in Rome, Storin said.When Pope John Paul I died in 1978, the University sent Father Bernard Ransing to the funeral. Ransing, a Holy Cross priest, was a member of the Congregation of the Religious in Rome.Storin said it is more difficult to have representation in Rome since Notre Dame is not officially part of the Church hierarchy.”When you consider that about 100 heads of state and government will attend, plus hundreds of cardinals and most of the 3,000 bishops of the church, additional representation might be logistically difficult,” he said. “We and other universities serve the church best as academic institutions and not as pastors or superiors, though we have a pastoral function. Our connection to the central Church is actually through our bishop, Bishop [John] D’Arcy.”On the campus of Notre Dame, the University has scheduled a daily rosary and prayer vespers to last through Thursday. It has also scheduled a special “Theology on Tap” with Professor Lawrence Cunningham to discuss “The Conclave and the Election of the New Pope,” set for Wednesday at 10:30 p.m. in Legends.On display in the Basilica is a zucchetto – or white skull cap – worn by Pope John Paul II and a crucifix he gave to University President Emeritus Father Theodore Hesburgh that is modeled after the crucifix on the pontiff’s pastoral staff.Black bunting will hang around the doors of the Basilica until a new pope is elected, according to Campus Ministry.Also, a Book of Remembrance for Pope John Paul II is available in the Basilica for those who want to inscribe their names to honor his memory.