About the Archdiocese


Archdiocese of Boston


66 Brooks Drive, Braintree, MA 02184-3839
Telephone: 617-254-0100
Snow Phone Line – (617) 746-5991

Pastoral Center Information: 

Bethany Chapel
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament
Pastoral Center Gift Shop  

It is the goal of the Pastoral Center to remain open during inclement weather unless travel conditions make it hazardous to get to work. In the event the offices are closed or there is a delay in opening, an announcement will be sent out via the IRIS system. In addition, notice will be recorded on the Snow Phone Line –  (617) 746‐5991 – no later than 5:45 a.m.


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Bishop Fenwick Explains Catholicism

Bish Fenwick Journal Entry

By Robert Johnson Lally
Archdiocesan Archivist and Records Manager

In the early days of our nation, the Church in Boston saw many changes. The time from when it was unlawful for Catholics to openly practice the faith, to the establishment of schools, hospitals, and a growing community of sisters, was only about 50 years. But while the faith community in Boston was growing, so was anti-Catholic sentiment.

It is important to note the connection between anti-Catholicism and anti-immigrant. In Boston at the time, Catholicism was synonymous with foreign. A movement called Nativism, an antipathy toward things foreign, had emerged.

Benedict Joseph Fenwick, named bishop of Boston in 1828, did much to combat Nativism. Three activities in particular stand out. First, he founded a Catholic newspaper in 1829. It went through a number of name changes. You know it today as our own The Pilot, the oldest, continuous Catholic publication in the country. Second, Bishop Fenwick arranged for the publication of a number of pamphlets designed to explain the true nature of Catholicism, which was being misrepresented. And finally, he created a series of Catholic lectures, which were held at the Cathedral.

By speaking up publicly, Bishop Fenwick helped lessen the impact of Nativism and set the stage for better times to come.