The sidewalk at the corner of East 19th Street and 3rd Avenue was packed with people in a jovial mood well before 11:00 am on October 20th. A covered sign had been conspicuously placed below the one indicating 19th Street with a long rope coming from its corner wrapping around the pole. After months of hard work, this section of street in New York City would be dedicated to Mother Cabrini.
The people gathered were indicative of the Cabrini reach over the last 100 years. In addition to Sisters the guests included a group of retired Cabrini nurses and staff, police officers in uniform, and representatives from a number of NYC institutions including the Archdiocese of New York and Sacred Hearts-Saint Stephen’s Parish in Brooklyn. All of these had experienced Cabrini in some way and were now present to celebrate this momentous occasion.
A brief program led by Sr. Pietrina Raccuglia, MSC started at 11:00 am. Speakers of note included Father Arthur Golino, formerly of Epiphany Parish, who blessed the sign, Sr. Catherine Garry, MSC who gave a stirring reflection on the life of Mother Cabrini, and Kathleen Kelly from Community Board 6 who wrote the resolution requesting the City Council honor our foundress in this way. The keynote comments were provided by Councilwoman Rosie Mendez, who highlighted the continuing work being done by the Missionary Sisters in support of immigrant communities. Finally, all Sisters in attendance were invited to participate in the removal of the sign cover. “Mother Cabrini Way” was revealed to a resounding countdown from 10 and cheers from the over 100 people present.
The celebration continued during a reception at Cabrini Senior Apartments, where people could take photographs with the duplicate sign. The community room and outdoor patio was filled with laughter and happy chatting. This coming together as one showed a true Cabrini spirit, which doubtless caused Mother to smile upon the occasion.
To view a Smilebox presentation on the dedication: