Cardinal George visitation begins Tuesday at Holy Name Cathedral

Tanja Babich Image
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Cardinal George visitation begins
Visitations and services for Francis Cardinal George began Tuesday at Holy Name Cathedral.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Three days of visitation for Francis Cardinal George began at 2 p.m. Tuesday with the Rite of Reception at Holy Name Cathedral. Public visitation began immediately after.

Mourners waited outside Holy Name Cathedral, some arriving as early as 6 a.m. Some mourners knew Cardinal George from his home parish St. Pascal, and many had personal memories of the cardinal.

The casket arrived just before 2 p.m. for the Rite of Reception, carried by newly ordained priests as Cardinal George requested. His family followed the procession as the cardinal was greeted for a final time by the cathedral's Rector and Auxiliary Bishops.

The service was brief with no Mass, and Monsignor Daniel Mayall offered the homily saying, "We're not here to canonize the cardinal, and not condemn him, but we are here to commend him to the Lord."

People can pay their respects to the late cardinal on Tuesday from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. to 11 p.m.; Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.; and overnight Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. Thursday.

Following the final visitation, a prayer service that is open to the public will be held before Holy Name closes its doors at 8 a.m. to prepare for the funeral Mass, which begins at 12 p.m. Only those with tickets to Cardinal George's funeral Mass will be allowed inside Holy Name.

Following the Mass, a committal service will be held at All Saints Cemetery in Des Plaines, Ill.

Live coverage of the day begins at 11 a.m. Thursday on

Cardinal George led Chicago's Catholic community for 17 years before retiring last November. He was succeeded by Archbishop Blase Cupich.

The cardinal died Friday at his home after a long battle with cancer. He asked to be buried in his family's plot. He was 78.

ADDITIONAL DETAILS: Cardinal George Services Schedule