Cardinal John J. O'Connor, archbishop of the New York Archdiocese, will preach in Buffalo on Friday when Monsignor Edward M. Grosz is ordained as a bishop in the Roman Catholic Church.
A native of Buffalo, Bishop-elect Grosz will become a bishop in a solemn ceremony at 11 a.m. in St. Joseph's Cathedral, 50 Franklin St. More than 20 bishops, including three prelates in the Ukrainian-Byzantine Catholic Church,will concelebrate the Ordination Mass. About 1,000 people are expected to attend the service, which is by invitation only.
Bishop-elect Grosz, 44, who has served for 14 years as director of the Diocesan Office of Worship, will be assigned as an auxiliary bishop in the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, joining Auxiliary Bishop Donald W. Trautman as an assistant to Bishop Edward D. Head. The new auxiliary bishop, whose specific duties are to be announced, will fill a vacancy created by the retirement of Auxiliary Bishop Bernard J. McLaughlin.
Bishop Head will serve as principal consecrator during the 90-minute service, and Auxiliary Bishops Trautman and McLaughlin will be co-consecrators. The bishop-elect's mother, Helen, and two brothers, Thomas and Ronald, will participate in the Offertory procession.
During the ceremony, Bishop-elect Grosz will be presented with a crozier, a staff carried by a bishop as a sign of ecclesiastical authority and a symbol that he is a shepherd of souls, and a miter, a peaked cap that also serves as a sign of church authority. He also will receive a ring, signifying his spiritual marriage to the church, a pectoral cross, a symbol of order and dignity, and a zucchetto, a small, round, violet skullcap.
Although he will be assigned to serve as an auxiliary bishop in the Buffalo Diocese, Bishop-Elect Grosz will have the honorary title of titular bishop of Morosbisdo, a diocese that formerly existed in western Bulgaria. The honorary title is in keeping with church tradition that a bishop should be in charge of a diocese.
A priest for 18 years, Bishop-elect Grosz was named auxiliary bishop in December by Pope John Paul II. He is considered an expert in liturgy and holds a master's degree in liturgy from the University of Notre Dame.
A Polish-American who also has Hungarian, German and Jewish heritage, Bishop-elect Grosz grew up in Buffalo's Black Rock section a few blocks from Assumption Church. After studying at Diocesan Preparatory Seminary and St. John Vianney Seminary, he was ordained in St. Joseph's Cathedral on May 29, 1971, by then-Bishop James A. McNulty.
In addition to heading the Office of Worship, he has served as associate pastor of Transfiguration, St. Luke's and Blessed Trinity parishes, all in Buffalo, and as a weekend associate and resident priest at St. Joseph's Cathedral. He has also served as chaplain to the Felician Sisters at the Villa Maria Motherhouse on Doat Street for 11 years.