October 6, 1983

All of America is saddened by the loss of Cardinal Cooke, a saintly man and a great spiritual leader. In life, Terence James Cooke inspired us with his personal holiness, his dedication to his church, his devotion to his flock. But in death as well, he had for us a special gift and a special inspiration. The world has rarely seen a more moving display of the three cardinal virtues than in the faith, hope, and love with which Cardinal Cooke confronted and conquered death. He bore his suffering in imitation of his savior.

Nancy and I consider it one of the great privileges of our lives that in his final months we had the chance to visit and pray with Cardinal Cooke. We join the people of New York and all America in mourning the grievous loss of a wonderful and holy man.