Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen lived a high-profile life as a radio and television personality and as an author. Since his death in 1979, his work has continued to inspire viewers—his popular TV program, “Life is Worth Living,” is now broadcast on EWTN—but his final resting place in St. Patrick's Cathedral in Manhattan has, in general, avoided the spotlight. However, fans of the televangelist priest soon will have a chance to get an up-close look at the crypt in which his body is laid to rest.
Prior to a Dec. 9 Mass on the 30th anniversary of Sheen’s death, visitors to the cathedral will be allowed to prayerfully visit the crypt beneath the main altar. The crypt will be open between 3:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., and Mass in the cathedral will begin at 5:30 p.m. The Mass will be celebrated by Archbishop Timothy Dolan, and members of Sheen’s family are expected to attend.
Sheen served as an auxiliary bishop in the New York archdiocese and Archbishop Dolan recently said Sheen’s use of the media for evangelization has been an inspiration to him in his own episcopacy. But New Yorkers aren’t the only ones who will be celebrating Sheen’s life and work on Dec 9. Masses have been scheduled for this date in 35 countries across six continents. Sheen’s cause for sainthood was opened in 2002, and some hope that the Masses will help demonstrate widespread support for his cause.
For more on the life of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, watch the video, below, from Catholic TV.