‘Very rich rite’ filled with symbolism will be used to consecrate Bishop-elect Tylka

Archbishop Bernard A. Hebda of St. Paul and Minneapolis prays over Bishop Donald E. DeGrood during his episcopal ordination and installation Mass as the ninth bishop of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Sioux Falls Feb. 13, 2020. This is one of the moments to watch for when Bishop-elect Louis Tylka is ordained to serve as coadjutor bishop of the Diocese of Peoria on July 23. (CNS/Michael G. Brown Photography)

In normal circumstances, St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria would be bursting at the seams with people for the ordination of Coadjutor Bishop-elect Louis Tylka this Thursday, July 23. Nevertheless, the celebration will be filled with enough prayer, music and ancient ritual to provide a joyful welcome for the man who will one day be the shepherd of the Diocese of Peoria.

“This will be a very rich ceremony, very rich rite. We’re not going to let the COVID-19 virus stop any of that,” said Msgr. Stanley Deptula, pastor of St. Matthew in Champaign and St. Boniface in Seymour and former director of the Office of Divine Worship for the Diocese of Peoria. “It will all be manifested in a beautiful way.”

For those who can’t witness that personally because attendance remains restricted to 250 people, the 2 p.m. Mass will be livestreamed at cdop.org and on the Catholic Diocese of Peoria’s Facebook page.

For a viewing guide for the liturgy, click here.


What they will be able to observe is “a tremendous manifestation of the church” in all of its unity, diversity and universality, according to Msgr. Deptula.

“This will be a very rich ceremony, very rich rite. We’re not going to let the COVID-19 virus stop any of that. It will all be manifested in a beautiful way.” — Msgr. Stanley Deptula

“We’re going to see that in the way the pope’s ambassador, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, the nuncio, reads the mandate,” he said. “We’ll see that even in our more local church the way our archbishop, Cardinal Blase Cupich, the metropolitan of the Chicago Province, will preside over the ritual. So it speaks of the Church of Peoria’s connection to the Church of Chicago and the Church of Rome.”

As another sign of unity, Bishop-elect Tylka will be dressed in the vestments worn by the priests of the Diocese of Peoria.

The diversity will come in the form of the Spanish that will be read and sung throughout the Mass at Bishop-elect Tylka’s request.

Msgr. Deptula said that by ancient tradition, three bishops are required for the consecration of a new bishop. The consecrator and main celebrant for this Mass will be Cardinal Cupich, who will also give the homily.

Cardinal Cupich will preside from the cathedra — the chair of the bishop in his cathedral and a sign of his teaching authority — which is another symbol of unity for the people of the Diocese of Peoria, Msgr. Deptula said.

The principal co-consecrators will be Archbishop Pierre and Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, of Peoria.

“It speaks of that College of Bishops that Bishop-elect Tylka is joining and becoming a successor of the apostles, who were chosen directly by Christ to guide and govern the church,” he explained.


The Rite of Ordination includes many special moments. Among them are:

  • “Veni, Creator Spiritus” or “Come, Holy Spirit”: This is an ancient hymn to the Holy Spirit. “Before we get into any of this, we’re pausing to invoke the Holy Spirit,” Msgr. Deptula said.
  • Presentation of the Candidate: After Bishop-elect Tylka presents himself to Cardinal Cupich, Msgr. Philip Halfacre, vicar general of the Diocese of Peoria, will ask that he be ordained “to the responsibility of the Episcopacy.”
  • Reading of the Mandate: The papal bull or mandate appointing Bishop-elect Tylka to the Diocese of Peoria will be read by Archbishop Pierre. Then Bishop-elect Tylka will show it to all present.
  • Promise of the Elect: Bishop-elect Tylka will be questioned “on his resolve to uphold the faith and to discharge his duty” in the presence of the people.
  • Litany of the Saints: The church on earth asks the “church triumphant” in heaven to be united with us “as we pray for this man who is about to receive this fullness of the priesthood,” Msgr. Deptula said. “It’s a beautiful, beautiful manifestation of heaven and earth coming together in the beauty of this divine liturgy.”
  • Prostration: During the Litany of the Saints, Bishop-elect Tylka will prostrate himself on the floor of the cathedral sanctuary as an act of humility and dying to self. “Father Lou is dying so Bishop Lou can rise,” Msgr. Deptula said.
  • The laying on of hands is an ancient symbol of prayer invoking the Holy Spirit. (CNS/Tyler Orsburn)

    Laying on of Hands: An ancient symbol of prayer invoking the Holy Spirit. This will begin with Cardinal Cupich, Archbishop Pierre and Bishop Jenky, and continue with the other bishops present.

  • Prayer of Consecration: All of the bishops will join Cardinal Cupich for this prayer. A Book of the Gospels will be held open over Bishop-elect Tylka’s head as he kneels. “That speaks of his primary job to be an apostle, to be a preacher of the Word. To go out, as Bishop Tylka’s own episcopal motto states, and make disciples,” Msgr. Deptula said.
  • Anointing of the Head: Sacred Chrism will be used for this anointing, which speaks to Bishop Tylka’s call to be a symbol of Christ, the head of the church, according to Msgr. Deptula.
  • Handing on the Book of the Gospels and the Insignia: The symbols of a bishop’s office are a ring, which speaks of his marriage to his bride, the church; a miter, which is the symbol of holiness, “that he may receive a crown of glory from the Lord”; and a crosier, which looks like a shepherd’s staff. “It traditionally has three elements,” said Msgr. Deptula of the crosier. “It’s curved at the top to pull in the wayward sheep. It’s pointed at the bottom to spur on the lazy sheep. The staff, the straight part, is to support the faithful sheep.” At the end of Mass, Bishop Tylka will walk through the cathedral, carrying the crosier for the first time and blessing the people. The priests of the Diocese of Peoria are purchasing a ring and pectoral cross for Bishop-elect Tylka. His official crosier, ring and pectoral cross are being designed by Daprato Rigali Studios and created by Empire Bronze.
  • The Kiss of Peace: The final act of the Rite of Ordination will see the bishops come forward to offer Bishop Tylka a sign of peace.
  • Bishop Tylka addresses the assembly: This will come just before the blessing and dismissal at the end of Mass.


While it’s not part of the Rite of Ordination, there is one more special moment in the liturgy. “We Are Called” will be sung as the altar is prepared at the beginning of the Liturgy of the Eucharist and calls to mind Micah 6:8, one of Bishop-elect Tylka’s favorite Scripture passages.

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