Our annual Eucharistic Congress
Hello and welcome back!
Friday I was very pleased to attend the annual American Cardinal’s Dinner to benefit the Catholic University of America.
The dinner is held every year to raise money to fund scholarships to help many deserving students to have an opportunity to attend CUA, including many from the Boston area.
Each year, it is held in a different city, and this year it was hosted by Cardinal George in Chicago.
There was a beautiful Mass in Chicago’s Holy Name Cathedral, presided over by Cardinal George. I was very pleased to see the new renovations of the Cathedral.
Like our Cathedral, the Cathedral the Holy Cross, the Cathedral of Chicago was built by the famous architect Patrick Keely. However, they had a fire and were forced to do extensive renovations, but they turned out just marvelously.
I continue to be impressed by the wonderful work John Garvey is doing as president of Catholic University.
President Garvey speaking with Cardinal George
I was very pleased that I was able to be part of this very important event to support the U.S. Bishops’ University.
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Saturday, I returned to Boston to attend the Fifth Annual Eucharistic Congress held in the North End.
I celebrated Mass for them in the afternoon.
The highlight of the Eucharistic Congress was the procession through the streets of the North End. After a half hour of adoration inside Sacred Heart Church we all went into the streets to proclaim our faith publicly.
We walked once around some of the beautiful cobble stone roads near Sacred Heart Church, stopped for a public adoration near the Paul Revere House, then walked over to St. Leonard of Port Maurice Church on the corner of Hanover and Prince Streets.
It was wonderful to see so many of our college students and young adults at the Eucharistic Congress. It is such a moment of grace for the whole Church. We are grateful to all of those who gave their time to organize the event.
I especially want to thank Office of the New Evangelization of Youth and Young Adults director Father Matt Williams, Office for Campus Ministries director Father Richard Clancy, and Vocations Office director Father Dan Hennessey for coming together with so many volunteers and staff to bring us such a wonderful public witness.
This past weekend was Good Shepherd Sunday, and so I would like to remind everyone to pray for vocations in our archdiocese and throughout the Church.
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Also that evening, I attended a fund-raising reception for the Little Sisters of the Poor held at the Harbor View Hotel.
The Little Sisters of the Poor have such a wonderful ministry, being devoted particularly to the care of needy elderly.
Here in Boston, they run the Jeanne Jugan Residence in Somerville.
In my remarks at the reception, I told the guests the sisters are a good example of a Christian response to people who were facing the last stages of life, and that our opposition to physician-assisted suicide finds a very concrete expression in the sense of solidarity and charity the Catholic community provides through ministries such as that of the Little Sisters of the Poor.
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Sunday, we had the Centennial Mass for St. Clement Parish in Somerville, Father Dennis Dever’s parish.
A fact I found quite interesting was that, in its 100 year history, St. Clement’s has had only four pastors, Father Dever being the fourth.
With Father Dever
I was particularly impressed to see the number of Sisters of St. Joseph who were there gathered for the celebration. They had staffed the parish school for many years and many of those in attendance were natives of the parish.
Likewise, many of the priests in attendance were also from St. Clement’s. I think this is just one indication of the deep faith and vitality of this parish to have spawned so many vocations to priestly and religious life.
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That afternoon, I went with a group of priests to Symphony Hall to see Mozart’s Coronation Mass. This is always been one of my favorite Masses of Mozart. The origin of the name is not certain but one theory holds that it was written for the coronation of an image of our lady in Austria. It’s a beautiful Mass and the soprano, Rosemary Joshua, was making her debut in the part did just a fantastic job.
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Monday, I was visited by a group of children making their First Communion from Father Chris Hickey’s parish, St. Mary’s in Hanover.
It was wonderful to meet with the youngsters though I was happy he didn’t bring the whole First Communion class along. I understand that this year the parish has something like 240 First Communions!
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I was very happy to accompany Father Rodney Copp and Maureen Heil from our local office of the Pontifical Mission Societies
Father Andrew Small, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies
At the dinner they honored TV and radio host Larry Kudlow, Cardinal McCarrick, and the noted author Mary Higgins Clark.
One of the special guests of the evening was Eduardo Verástegui, whom some of you may know from the “Bella”, and is starring in the new movie “For Greater Glory”. I was very pleased to be able to meet him.
They also had a reliquary there of the Mexican martyrs, which was a large silver cross.
Boston is one of the dioceses that has been most supportive of the missions. We have had that tradition since the days of Cardinal Cushing, who founded the Missionary Society of St. James the Apostle and put us on a trajectory of being a very mission-minded Church.
In our own history, 200 years ago the Society for the Propagation of the Faith in France supported the then-mission territory of Boston. So, now it’s our turn to support the emerging churches in the Third World and other missions.
Until next week,