Memorial and dedication
Last Friday (5/18) I went to Catholic Memorial School to celebrate Mass with the students, faculty and friends of the school and for the dedication ceremony of the renovated student lounge, which has been named the Kennedy Commons, for Father Dan Kennedy.
It was amazing to reflect on his short life as a priest -- he was ordained less than a year before he died ten years ago, and since his death a bridge in Needham has been dedicated to his memory and now his alma mater has dedicated the Kennedy Commons.
Father Dan's chalice was used during the Mass, and I'm told that he designed the chalice with Catholic Memorial in mind. It is silver and red, the same colors that represent his alma mater. Several priests who knew Father Dan concelebrated the Mass with me.
Ordaining new priests
The next day (5/19), I had the joy of ordaining new priests here in Boston. This year, because of the upper church of the Cathedral being closed, the ordination was held at Mission Church.
It was a full church and a beautiful celebration. It was a cross section of the population with people from every different background, including those of Hispanic, Korean and African heritage.
Ordained for the Archdiocese of Boston were Priests Benito Moreno, Andrea Povero, Eric Velasquez, Joseph Kim, Michael Rora, Baldemar Garza and Lambert Nieme.
Little Sisters of the Poor fundraiser
That evening (5/19) I celebrated Mass with the Little Sisters of the Poor at their Jeanne Jugan Residence before their annual fundraising gala.
There were a number of priest concelebrants, especially those whose mothers are in the Jeanne Jugan home. The sisters have such a wonderful ministry in the Archdiocese and we're so grateful for the great work that they do.
St. Anselm's commencement address
On Pentecost day (5/20), I was at St. Anselm College, where I gave the commencement address and received an honorary doctorate.
There was a little rain so the graduation ceremony was held indoors, but graduations are always very joyful celebrations. St. Anselm is a Catholic college with a strong religious identity and the presence of the Benedictine monks and the liturgical life of the monastery is a great blessing on that campus.
The next day (5/21), I was at Boston College to offer the benediction for their commencement celebration.
Archbishop Wilton Gregory, the archbishop of Atlanta, was their commencement speaker, and he gave a beautiful commencement address and he was given an honorary doctorate.
That evening (5/21) I went to Boston University for the presentation of their Medeiros Scholarships.
Every year B.U. awards about a dozen full scholarships to graduates of Catholic high schools in the archdiocese. This tradition was begun many years ago by B.U. president John Silber in honor of Cardinal Medeiros.
In total, the scholarships are worth about $2.5 million, and since the beginning the scholarships that have been given out total over $50 million. It's a very great blessing for those families and the young people who receive the awards.
Lunch with newly ordained priests
The next day (Wednesday 5/23), I was able to have lunch with the newly ordained priests and their families at the Pastoral Center.
It's a very special event because at the time of the ordination ceremony and the first Masses there are such huge crowds you don't really have the opportunity to spend time with the new priests and their families. This lunch that we hold every year gives us that opportunity.
Environmental press conference
Later on (5/23), I welcomed scientists and faith leaders to the Pastoral Center for a press conference to urge action on climate change.
Several months ago, we had a meeting at the Pastoral Center with scientists and Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim religious leaders to discuss the environment and climate change, and out of that came this follow-up meeting.