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Thursday, July 26, 2012

92 Year Old Nun Makes Bishops' New Mitres

Here in the Brooklyn diocese we've had two new auxiliary bishops ordained this month and an article in the diocesan newspaper, The Tablet,  reports that their mitres were hand made by 92 year old Sister Mary Isabel, R.S.M..

Sister Mary Isabel began making mitres for the diocesan bishops in 1980 when she worked for Msgr. Anthony Bevilacqua in the chancery.  Msgr. Bevilacqua (later Cardinal Bevilacqua) was about to be ordained an auxiliary bishop and was bemoaning the fact that mitres were so expensive.  Sister Mary Isabel, who had learned how to sew at a young age, thought that she might be able to make one.  So, using an old mitre as a sample, she figured out the pattern and was able to devise a new mitre, only charging Msgr. Bevilacqua $2.29 for the finished product.  Thus began a cottage industry of "mitre making."

Sister Isabel at work.  Photo:  The Tablet
 Go read the whole article by Jim Mancari here, and learn how Sister Isabel was called out of retirement and who the other bishops and cardinals were who wore her creations.

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