By Sabina Mollot
Cardinal Timothy Dolan heaped praise upon Church of the Epiphany on Saturday, when he led a special mass and later helped celebrate the parish’s ongoing 150th-anniversary festivities.
The church’s pastor, Reverend Austin Titus later told Town & Village that in Dolan’s remarks, he acknowledged the local church’s history of “reaching out to the neighborhood and serving them in all their pastoral needs” and also commented on the affiliated school for having educated thousands of children. Another topic, Titus recalled was “Epiphany (having) a long history of bringing people together.” What wasn’t discussed, perhaps mercifully, was politics. “He steered clear of that. We were celebrating,” Titus said.
Following the hourlong mass, which began at 4 p.m. Dolan, the archbishop of New York, remained onsite for a reception and stayed until about 7 p.m.
“It was a great event. I’m still trying to come down from the clouds,” Titus said.
Meanwhile, a parishioner from Stuy Town who attended later told us that there was a heavy police presence at the church, including dogs from the K-9 unit, which made him wonder if the cardinal had been threatened.
However, according to a church employee, the police were just there to control traffic since the Saturday event packed every pew. The Gramercy Park church can hold 700 people and was filled to capacity with some, but not all of the guests later heading to the smaller parish hall, where the reception was held.
Epiphany’s sesquicentennial celebration kicked off on September 1, 2017, and will continue through June 30, 2018, to coincide with the school year.