In a fitting tribute, groups of four students representing all of the Catholic high schools in the archdiocese and many of the area’s Catholic-based-youth groups stood for one-hour shifts as honor guards next to Archbishop Murphy’s casket while lying in state in St. James Cathedral from the afternoon of July 1 to the morning of July 3. More than 100 students participated.
Many of the students shared very poignant thoughts about the experience. “As I attempted to stand still and stay awake,” said Eileen Twohy, a sophomore at Seattle Prep who had a 4:30 a.m. shift, “I pondered with admiration the love these people must have to be present so early in the morning, while the rest of the city remained asleep.”
Heather Allen, a member of the Archdiocesan African-American Youth Group, shared the following reflection, “Standing by his side gave me an opportunity to see the diversity in our church and the unity among us he worked so hard for.”
Rolland Ballie, a senior at O’Dea High School, said, “I was surprised at the peacefulness on his face. … It was comforting to see that at least he was not in pain now, and that wherever he was he’d finally be able to sit back and see how many lives he’d really touched through his ministry of love and compassion.”