La Crosse Catholics travel to Rome for Burke Consistory
LA CROSSE (WXOW)--More than 100 members of the La Crosse Diocese are headed to Rome to witness former Bishop Raymond Burke take his place as a Cardinal.
Cardinal-elect Burke served as Bishop of the La Crosse Diocese from 1995 to 2004. He left to become the Archbishop of Saint Louis and most recently served at the Vatican.
Burke is one of 24 new Cardinals to be installed this weekend. Cardinals advise the Pope and have the duty of electing a new Pope.
102 parishioners of the La Crosse diocese will attend the ceremony. Half of the group left early Tuesday morning. The rest leave Thursday. Emily Dawson helped to organize the trips. She says people in the Diocese are excited to witness history. "He (Burke) was born with in the La Crosse diocese. He became a priest with in the La Crosse diocese. We're just really proud and honored and we want to celebrate."
The ceremony, called the consistory, takes place in two parts. On Saturday, Cardinal-elect Burke will receive his red Cardinal hat, and on Sunday his ring.
A Cardinal retains his title and advisory role for life, but can only vote for a new Pope until his 80th birthday. Burke is 62. The current Pope, Pope Benedict is 83. Many in the Catholic community believe Burke will vote for a new Pope during the next 18 years.