Co-Cathedral has special meaning for local family

April 1, 2008 4:25:41 PM PDT
Many of our area's 1.3 million Catholics have been waiting for years to see Houston's new co-cathedral, but one has a connection to it that he never dreamed possible. It's a family connection he never knew about until now. In the mountains of northern Italy, near a little town called Carrara, there are quarries filled with white marble of world class quality, massive amounts of it, marble as far as the eye can see.

It is the spot where Michelangelo himself chose the marble to create 'David.'

FULL COVERAGE: Go inside the new co-cathedral
VIDEO: Video coverage of the co-cathedral

Living and working in Houston as an architect and interior designer, Mark Bufalini never realized his connection to it.

"It really, really touched our hearts," he told us.

The building of Houston's new co-cathedral brought those ties to light. And Mark is forever thankful.

"Someone mentioned my name in connection to the cathedral and that's when I started putting two and two together," he said.

Mark saw his family for the very first time when we aired our special.

"My wife and my daughter and I watched that evening, and my daughter cried because she was seeing a cousin that she's never met before," said Mark.

In Carrara, we followed Alberto and his sister, Francesca Bufalini, through their expansive facility, not far from the quarries, to witness their work.

"And I grew up, since I was a baby, child, through the quarries and the shops, dealing with stone," said Alberto.

"Seeing him talk, about his business and what he does for a living, his artistic side just brings home a little of where I came from, and where I may have gotten some of my artistic abilities," said Mark.

The two will finally meet at the dedication this week, but already, Mark is learning about his roots.

"He told us about where we got our name from," said Mark. "It turns out a relative of mine in the early 14th Century saved a king from a buffalo attack."

And the Bufalini name was born, a name drawing two men from around the world to Houston's new co-cathedral.

The dedication is this Wednesday, April 2. ABC13 will have exclusive live coverage in English and in Spanish beginning at 11am both on Channel 13 and here on abc13.com. Cardinal Daniel DiNardo and dignitaries from around the world will be at the special ceremony.

- Headlines at a glance


Load Comments