Plaza Will Bear Priest’s Name
Published: May 15, 2008
ATLANTA—As Franciscan Father Mario DiLella departed as Georgia Tech Catholic chaplain, the archdiocese announced that the plaza in front of the Catholic Center at Tech will be dedicated in his name and in his honor this fall.
In a letter read at Father Mario’s final Sunday Mass at Tech, Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory said the plaza dedication will “recall for all who visit this place, the love of our Lord which Father Mario helped build into the hearts of countless students.”
It will also be “a reminder that (Father Mario) was immediately responsible for conceiving and carrying out the construction of the Catholic Center” at Tech.
The Catholic Center on Fourth Street is where the chaplain has lived and worked for more than 20 years, after starting his ministry in a small campus house in 1970.
Archbishop Gregory said he wanted to “recognize the service of one of the most outstanding priests ever to serve in the Archdiocese of Atlanta.”
Father Mario received a standing ovation as Msgr. Joseph Corbett, vicar general, read the archbishop’s letter at Mass.
For nearly 38 years “Father Mario has been pastor to thousands of Catholic students, who come for a time and then leave to follow God’s plan for their own lives, their own futures,” the archbishop wrote. “Yet all who know Father Mario understand that with the passing of the years, a part of his heart goes with every departing student, who leave behind, in fair exchange, their own love and gratitude. It is a bond unparalleled in the annals of this archdiocese. … Words cannot sufficiently praise the good work done by Father Mario.”