‘Operation Sacred Rescue’: Remains of 62 Loretto Sisters from Loretto Heights Cemetery Reinterred
“I just needed to tell you how truly reverent, respectful and joyful was the relocation ceremony of the good sisters at Mt. Olivet. Many more people will visit Mt. Olivet in the decades to come than ever would have returned to Loretto Heights. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, Rest in Peace.”
A memorial Mass and recommittal service for 62 Sisters of Loretto, formerly buried at Loretto Heights Cemetery took place Aug. 22, at Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery in Wheat Ridge, Colo. The remains had been exhumed and moved this summer to ensure their perpetual care.
The service began with a musical and floral tribute. The Mass was concelebrated by Denver Auxiliary Bishop Jorge Rodríguez and the Revs. Marty Lally and Roland Freeman. After Mass, there was a re-committal where short biographies of each Sister were read by Loretto Community members and Spirit of Loretto Loretto Heights College alumnae. Fathers Marty and Roland offered the graveside prayers.
“The ceremony was more than splendid. I prayed every day at the graveyard on the Loretto Heights cemetery. I began sobbing when I saw the 62 caskets prepared for the recommittal memorial Mass. The entire ceremony was thrilling. The music was touching.”
A recording of the service is available here.
More background information about the reasons for and process of the exhumation can be found on this webpost.
“Just want to say that yesterday’s service for the reburial of the Sisters from Loretto Heights was beautiful! Perfect day, perfect service, perfect resting place. Sister Mary Nelle and all the other sisters, students from the three high schools, the Archbishop, priests, deacons, Knights of Columbus, and most especially all the carpenters who built the beautiful, new caskets, and those who carefully placed each casket into its vault with such respect and seamless timing taught us all how to pay proper respect. Such an honor to be witness to such a significant, historic event. Peace be with us all.”