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From Cardinal Seán's blog

"Last Thursday (Sept. 2), I had some friends visiting from Portugal... thought the emblematic Boston experience would be the Boston Duck Tour." Pilot photo/Gregory L. Tracy

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(Last week marked) the end of Ramadan for the Muslim community and I extend my greetings to them. I think it's particularly important in light of the recent events in Florida, where a Christian clergyman has threatened to burn the Quran on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

Also (last) week, the Jewish community is celebrating Rosh Hashanah. As I mentioned in a recent interview with The Boston Globe, the Jewish community has been very, very supportive of the educational and charitable works of the archdiocese. We're very grateful to our Jewish friends and wish their community health, happiness and peace as they celebrate their new year.

Duck Tour

Last Thursday (Sept. 2), I had some friends visiting from Portugal, Joao and Maria Cortez de Lobao and their seven children.

Maria was a parishioner of mine many years ago in my Portuguese parish in Washington. She was studying theology at the time. I celebrated their marriage and baptized their seven children. They have since returned to Portugal where they are in the olive oil business.

I was delighted to see them and have them visit us here in Boston. We thought the emblematic Boston experience would be the Boston Duck Tour.

Manny Rogers, one of the co-owners of Boston Duck Tours and an outstanding member of the Portuguese community in Cambridge, helped us arrange the tour.

I had never done it myself, although a few years ago my father and family went on it and enjoyed it very much.

One of the things that makes Boston Duck Tours so unique is that you get to see the city both from the land and the water. The children were gleeful when the amphibious vehicle went into the waters of the Charles. It was a big surprise for the little kids. They thought it was just wonderful.

Boston is such a historical city and the duck tour is a wonderful way to showcase some historic sights.

The trip was a delightful experience. We are so grateful to Manny and all the staff and guides at the duck tours for an enjoyable afternoon in the city.

Visiting Marian Manor

As you might imagine, Labor Day weekend is not a big weekend for invitations to parishes, with so many people travelling and the like.

So, we thought it would be a good opportunity to visit Marian Manor, a nursing and rehabilitation facility in Dorchester Heights, and say Mass for the sisters and the residents there on Sunday.

Afterwards, we were able to greet many of the residents.

Also at the Mass was Bridget Conroy, who is 108 years old. I have met her before and every time I meet her she says, "My mother was an O'Malley!" She is a lovely lady and is in remarkable shape for 108 years.

The Carmelite Sisters of the Aged and Infirmed do such an extraordinary job caring for our elderly. I was blessed to have them both in Fall River and Palm Beach before coming here. Here of course they have not only Marian Manor but St. Patrick's. Both of these institutions provide extraordinary service to the people of the archdiocese.

We are very grateful for them and we pray the Lord will bless their community with many vocations and they will be able to continue and flourish in the beautiful ministry the Lord has given to them.

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