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15
Jun

The USCCB Spring Meeting

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Hello and welcome!

Last Saturday, we had the joy of ordaining seven transitional deacons at the Cathedral the Holy Cross. These are men who, next year, will be ordained priests. It is always a very happy moment for the Church to be ordaining men to ministry.Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

I was struck that the number of those being ordained was seven, which was the number of the original deacons in the Acts of the Apostles. In my homily, I teased them a little bit about that, saying that there are many things that come in sets of seven — the Seven Wonders of the World, the Magnificent Seven and, of course, the Seven Dwarves — but most importantly there are the seven deacons in the Acts of the Apostles who were ordained to carry on the ministry of mercy and to work to heal divisions in the community. These are still very important functions of our deacons today.Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

Of course, the diaconate represents the servanthood of Jesus Christ, which is manifested in this ministry. The Church has the tradition of ordaining men as deacons before they are ordained priests, but they will always be ordained into this ministry of servanthood, which will perdure in their priesthood, as well.Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Erick Gonzalez, Joseph Hubbard, Matthew Norwood, Fernando J. Vivas, and Daniel Zinger for the Archdiocese of Boston; Brother Paul Kallal for the Oblates of the Virgin Mary; and Brother Antonio B. Lopez for the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata are ordained transitional deacons June 8, 2019 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.<br />
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

The word deacon means “servant,” and Jesus said he came to serve, not to be served. He is calling us to follow the example that he gave us at the first Eucharist — The Last Supper — in which he washed the feet of the disciples and told us that he was doing this to give us an example of fraternal love and service to one another.


Pentecost Sunday, I went to the Madonna Queen Shrine in East Boston to celebrate confirmations for the Brazilian community. It was a very large group of about 150 confirmands.62486407_2537792409588221_5763047006796775424_n62643820_2537792292921566_6870472502657679360_n64490072_2537792439588218_6310823038329815040_n

The Mass was also an opportunity for us to welcome the two new Don Orione Fathers who have arrived to minister at the Shrine – Father Antonio, a Brazilian priest who was previously working in the Philippines, and Father Angel who is a Spanish priest and is now stationed at the shrine with responsibility for the Spanish-speaking community.

62156952_2537792286254900_8507705768080834560_n


On Monday, we began our annual Spring Meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.IMG_0631

In conjunction with the plenary session, there are also always a number of committee and other meetings that are held either before or during the plenary session.

One such meeting that I attended was a meeting of the board of directors of the National Catholic Bioethics Center on Monday. The NCBC actually began in Boston and is a national center that has been invaluable in the life of the Church, particularly around questions of medical ethics.NCBC

The founder and first director of the center, Dr. John Haas, is finishing up his long tenure there. So, this was his last meeting as president. DrJohnHaas-2

He has given just extraordinary service to the Church in this area that is becoming more and more complex and more and more important in the life of the Church. It was an opportunity for the bishops and the others present to express our heartfelt thanks to Dr. Haas for his tireless work. He has served the Church in so many different ways.

At the meeting, we were also introduced to the new president, Dr. Joseph Meaney, who had previously served as Director of International Outreach and Expansion for Human Life International. We were very pleased to welcome him.Meaney


That day we also had a meeting of the U.S. Bishops’ committee for the Church in Africa. This committee was founded thanks to the efforts of Bishop John Ricard, who is a Josephite. Because of his work on the board of Catholic Relief Services, he became acquainted with the tremendous growth and also the great economic challenges that the Church in Africa faces. So, he asked the conference to begin a special collection for the Church there, very much like the special election for the Church in Latin America and the Church in the Middle East. It is always very encouraging to see the wonderful things that are being done through this collection.


On Tuesday, we began the general sessions where the key issue being dealt with was the issue of accountability, transparency and involvement of laypeople in the path forward to resolve challenges in reporting and investigating allegations of misconduct concerning bishops and superiors. BISHOPS-SPRING-MEETING

There had been great expectation around the November bishops’ meeting, which was frustrated by the postponement in making decisions requested by the Vatican. Then, in January, bishops had the opportunity to gather in Chicago at Mundelein Seminary for a wonderful retreat, which was a chance to reflect more on the issue and to wait for direction from the Holy See that would apply to bishops’ conferences around the world. That document came out recently and was the basis for our deliberations and the decisions that have been made here in Baltimore. I think there was great unity shown among the bishops and resolve to confront this challenge. So, I think the bishops feel very positive about the meeting.

For those who want to learn more, I’d like to share with you this question and answer document prepared by the USCCB, which gives a broad overview of our work on this issue:

MOVING FORWARD

Concrete Steps to Hold Bishops Accountable

1. What happened in Baltimore?

The USCCB voted on several proposals to hold bishops accountable for instances of sexual abuse of children or vulnerable persons, sexual misconduct, or the intentional mishandling of such cases. We specifically committed to involving and utilizing lay professional experts. We also established a new, independent mechanism for the reporting of such cases.

2. Isn’t the “Metropolitan Model” just bishops policing bishops?

While we have seen Metropolitan investigations achieve success in uncovering, publicizing and punishing bishop misconduct multiple times in the past year, the body of bishops agreed in Baltimore that independent lay oversight is crucial. The combination of lay involvement, Metropolitan leadership and the final judgment of the Holy See will ensure that complaints are evaluated thoroughly, and justice is achieved for victims and survivors.

3. How exactly will the laity be involved?

We’re building upon the well-established practice of lay expertise in the Church, starting at the very beginning of this process. Laypeople will assist us in informing the public about how to utilize our new reporting mechanism. A lay person will be informed any time a complaint comes through that process. Lay investigators will be identified at the provincial level by Metropolitan Archbishops and will play an active role in investigating individual complaints against bishops.

4. Is this process transparent? What will the public know about credible complaints against individual bishops?

Pope Francis’s Motu Proprio includes whistleblower protections that will allow anyone making a complaint to publicize it however they wish. The new Directives require those making a complaint to be given documents describing the process. As noted, the bishops are also committed to lay involvement in both the receiving of complaints against bishops and in any investigations. With these safeguards, the bishops are committed to making the process as transparent as they possibly can.

5. Level with me: Will the policies approved in Baltimore protect people from abuse at the hands of bishops?

We’ve achieved a goal stated by USCCB President Cardinal DiNardo throughout the process: We’ve filled the gaps in the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People and now build upon its success. The Holy Father’s Motu Proprio, the new Directives, the renewed Episcopal Commitments, the third-party reporting system, and the heavy emphasis and reliance on lay expertise in the United States will bring unprecedented accountability throughout the hierarchy of the American Church.

The national reporting mechanism may not be ready until next spring, but we already have something in place in the Archdiocese of Boston. When the bishops of the Boston Province realized what the timeframe was for the national program to be launched, they asked to come on board with Boston, so that we can begin this program immediately while we wait for the bishops’ conference to be able to launch the national program.  Of course, the program will involve laypeople in the process. So, we are very happy to welcome them and there will be further announcements about this in the very near future.


While the issue of accountability was our primary focus, there were some other items from our meeting that I want to share with you.

For example, we also heard a presentation by Bishop Robert Barron on millennials, evangelization and apologetics, in preparation for a more fulsome presentation that he and his group will be presenting at the U.S. Bishops’ meeting in November.BISHOPS-DEATH-PENALTY

There was also a request from Bishop Doerfler of Marquette, Michigan to advance the cause of canonization for Mr. Irving Houle.

Mr. Houle was a member of the Knights of Columbus, a veteran, an athlete and a father of a family — he was a man who led a very ordinary, but a very holy life. BISHOPS-HOULE-CAUSE

He is being held up as an example of sanctity in the ordinary circumstances of the life of a Catholic. He is now a Servant of God and with the approval of the bishops’ conference his cause can advance.

And, of course, the bishops were also very pleased when it was announced that Father Augustus Tolton, a former slave who became the first black priest in the U.S., was put on the path to sainthood by Pope Francis when, on Wednesday, he signed the decree of recognizing his heroic virtue.POPE-CAUSES-TOLTON

We also took a vote on the National Directory for the Formation, Ministry and Life of Permanent Deacons in the United States.


The bishops’ meeting happened to coincide with the birthday of Bishop Robert Reed. So, on Wednesday we had a small birthday party at a local Italian restaurant for him.IMG_0628_2

It was nice of him to plan his birthday in a way that all the Boston bishops could be together for the celebration!

Until next week,

Cardinal Seán

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08
Jun

Confirmations and jubilees

Tags: Main

Hello and welcome,

Last Friday I attended the wake of Charles Fox, a man who was very involved in the life of the archdiocese for decades, along with his wife Janice. IMG_1180

I was very happy to be able to be there and to offer a prayer at his wake.


Of course, this is the time of year when many confirmations are celebrated and, over the weekend, I had the joy of celebrating three confirmation Masses at parishes in the archdiocese.

Though receiving confirmation is always a special event in the life of a young person, I thought it was particularly nice that these celebrations were held during the Pentecost Novena. It is the time when the Early Church was gathered in intense prayer, waiting for the coming of the Gifts of the Spirit that transformed the community on Pentecost.

I am always happy for these opportunities to be able to speak to our young people about their faith, the need to be part of a worshiping community and to prepare for one’s vocation in life.

The first celebration was on Saturday, for about 100 young people from the Brazilian community in the archdiocese at St. Tarcisius Parish in Framingham. Concelebrating with me was the pastor, Father Volmar Scaravelli, as well as a number of priests who minister to the Brazilian community.StT-Confirm-532566cc-8448-4aab-afe4-6229c348c522StT-Confirm-F58A7378 (3)StT-Confirm-F58A7387 (1)StT-Confirm-F58A7648 (2)StT-Confirm-F58A7737

This was the first of two celebrations of confirmation for the Brazilian community that I will hold this year. In the past, we would often hold them all together at the cathedral, but the numbers have become so large that we have decided to split them into two celebrations. So, next weekend, I will have another celebration for the community at the Madonna Queen Shrine in East Boston.

Then on Sunday, I had two confirmation celebrations of at Our Lady of the Assumption in Marshfield, one at 1:00 in the afternoon, and another 4:00. Concelebrating with us was the new administrator, Father Mark Derrane, and Father Joe Hennessey. In fact, Father Mark had just arrived in the parish day before, so the celebration was an opportunity for him to introduce himself to the parish even as he was welcoming me. (I teased him that I had come to make sure he arrived for his new assignment!)


That evening, I attended the wake for John Riley, the father of Father Ed Riley, which was held at St. John’s Church in Wellesley. The Rileys are from a very large family and are very prominent in the Catholic community, so there were hundreds of people there to express their condolences. I was pleased to be able to be among them.


Monday, I attended the annual dinner of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, at which I gave the invocation. The Governor of the Commonwealth is the titular head of the organization, so Governor Baker also joined us to address the group, as well as retired General David Perkins, who offered the keynote.AHAC-2

Past Captain Commander Charles McCarthy, Governor Baker, and General and Mrs. Perkins

Being there, I was reminded how many members of our own Knights of Malta are also members of the Ancient and Honorables. Of course, one of their principal chaplains is Father Ed McCabe, who is himself a former military chaplain.AHAC-1

Mass. Secretary Veteran Affairs Francisco Urena; AHAC Captain Commander Nicholas Schiarizzi; Joseph Milano, AHAC and Order of Malta; and Robert Santiago, Commissioner Veteran Services for the City of Boston

It was a colorful event because the Ancient and Honorables are sort of the remnant of the local colonial militia in Massachusetts, and they have maintained some of those traditions. So, there were many people there in their military attire. There were some representatives of the British there, including one dressed as a redcoat which, of course, made me think of the cry, “The redcoats are coming!”


On Tuesday, we celebrated a special Mass for jubilarian priests at Regina Cleri. Each year, we invite all the priests who are celebrating their 50th anniversary, whether they be diocesan or religious, to join the residents of Regina Cleri for this Mass and a lunch afterward.50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS

It was a wonderful celebration, and we are all looking forward to the upcoming rededication of the chapel at Regina Cleri, which we hope will be ready by August.50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS50th Jubilee Mass at Regina Cleri, June 4, 2019.
Photo by Joe Austin, BCDS


That afternoon, I attended a reception in support of our Capital Campaign “Inspiring Hope” at the home of Duncan and Marlene O’Brien in Wellesley.CapitalC-01

Duncan is the brother of Father Paul O’Brien, and at the gathering Father Paul spoke about the Capital Campaign in his parish and how it is geared toward supporting not only the archdiocese but also his own parish school. He also spoke about the work of the Cor Unum Meal Center.

During the gathering, we also heard from Father Bryan Hehir, who spoke about the work of Catholic Charities and I addressed the group about our motivations, goals and aspirations for the campaign as a whole.


Wednesday, we had a special Mass and luncheon at the Pastoral Center honoring priests and brothers in the archdiocese celebrating significant jubilees.Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

We were joined by Fathers Scott Euvrard, Mark Coiro and William Brown, OMV, who were celebrating their 25th anniversary of ordination and Brother Leonard Haley, SM, who was celebrating 60 years of religious life and Brother Gabriel Aceto, OFM, who was celebrating 50 years.Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

Brother Leonard said that he was with me 10 years ago when he was celebrating his Golden Jubilee and so I told him that I expect him to come back in 10 years for his 70th!Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

Following the Mass, we had a luncheon for jubilarians and their families.Mass for jubliarian priests and brothers, June 5, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy


That afternoon, I met with Father Matt Malone, SJ, the editor of America Magazine, who stopped by to say hello.IMG_0626-2

During our conversation, he told me that in the lobby of America Magazine there is a portrait of Cardinal Cushing because he paid for their original house in New York. I had no idea that was the case, and shared with him that a few years ago I was invited down to Washington for the 50th anniversary of the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, or CARA. At first, I wondered why they were in inviting me, and it turned out it was because Cardinal Cushing helped found them, too!


Finally, on Thursday, we had our lunch and reception for the winners of our Excellence in Education Award. These are five elementary school and five secondary school teachers selected from a large group of nominees put forth by their school communities. Superintendent of Catholic Schools Thomas Carroll and Cardinal O’Malley present the 2019 Excellence in Education award, June 6, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

This year’s winners were:

Eric Bernazzani of Cardinal Spellman High School, Brockton;

Julie Billingsley of St. John the Evangelist School, Canton;

Vincent Bradley of Catholic Memorial School, West Roxbury;

Kathleen Carabine of East Boston Central Catholic School;

Melissa Ewing of Boston College High School, Dorchester;

Rachel Ferullo of Blessed Sacrament School, Walpole;

Christopher Lynch of St. John’s Prep, Danvers;

Michael Murphy of Nativity Preparatory, Boston;

James O’Neill of Central Catholic High School, Lawrence; and

Mary Powers of South Boston Catholic Academy.

I was so happy to have had the opportunity to reward at least some of our Catholic school teachers for their wonderful work. Superintendent of Catholic Schools Thomas Carroll and Cardinal O’Malley present the 2019 Excellence in Education award, June 6, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Superintendent of Catholic Schools Thomas Carroll and Cardinal O’Malley present the 2019 Excellence in Education award, June 6, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy Superintendent of Catholic Schools Thomas Carroll and Cardinal O’Malley present the 2019 Excellence in Education award, June 6, 2019.
Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy

We know that our Catholic school teachers often don’t earn as much as they could elsewhere, but do what they do because they are so devoted to the mission. So, it was a wonderful way to celebrate their valuable contributions and to recognize at least a small portion of our extraordinarily dedicated Catholic school teachers.

Until next week,

Cardinal Seán

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