September 25, 2015 – The wines that will be used during Pope Francis’ two-day visit to New York City will be supplied by O-Neh-Da Vineyard from the Finger Lakes region of New York state.
The winery was founded in 1872 by the Bishop of Rochester, NY, Bernard J. McQuaid. Seneca Indians hunted and fished in the area and Bishop McQuaid chose to honor that history with the name O-Neh-Da meaning “hemlock” in the Seneca language. Hemlock trees are abundant in the area surrounding Hemlock Lake. Bishop McQuaid’s goal for the vineyard was to be a reliable supplier of sacramental wine.
For 143 years O-Neh-Da has fulfilled the Bishop’s mission providing sacramental wine to Catholic, Orthodox, Episcopal and Lutheran churches. The wine used for Communion in the Catholic Church must be pure, made with grapes and contain no extraneous matter. The Eagle Crest Winery division of O-Neh-Da makes table wines.
The winery is donating the wine that will be used in the Mass celebrated by Pope Francis at Madison Square Gardens on September 25 that will be attended by thousands. They also gifted premium Finger Lakes Riesling, Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc to be served with meals for Pope Francis and other dignitaries during the New York visit.