Fr. Michael DeLaney, C.S.C., was installed as the new Rector of St. Joseph’s Oratory on November 22 at a Mass in the Main Basilica celebrated by Fr. Mario Lachapelle, C.S.C., Superior of the Canadian Province of Priests and Brothers.
Fr. DeLaney replaces former Superior General, Fr. Claude Grou, C.S.C., who served in this capacity for 15 years. Fr. Grou preached at the installation Mass which had several Holy Cross members in attendance.
As a gesture of the change in leadership, Fr. DeLaney was presented with a symbolic key to the Oratory by Fr. Lachapelle.
Although COVID-19 restrictions limited the number of worshipers to 25 people, the live-streamed Mass was viewed on Facebook and the Oratory website by over 3,500 people within the first 24 hours. Fr. DeLaney said that he has also personally received congratulations from people in 20 different countries, many of whom watched the Mass online.
In his various interviews with media, Fr. DeLaney has emphasized the importance of St. André’s ministry at the Oratory as being an extension of the Holy Cross mission. In accepting his new ministry, Fr. DeLaney said, “I am very grateful and honored for this opportunity to continue the good works of St. Brother André so that his important mission reflects the values of the Congregation of Holy Cross.”
Realizing he is the first non-Quebecois Rector, Fr. DeLaney, who is a member of the United States Province of Priests and Brothers, says that having lived before outside of his home country, he understands the importance of language as being an “entry into a country’s culture.” Because of this, he has prepared for this ministry by spending several months fine-tuning his French language.
Fr. DeLaney has previously served in Portland, Chicago, and Santiago where he was the District Superior for close to 10 years. Since 2015, he has been the Director of the Holy Cross Mission Center.
Let's offer Fr. DeLaney our prayerful support as he begins his new ministry of leadership at this significant patrimonial site of St. André Bessette and the Congregation of Holy Cross.