Father Ronal Bourgault will retire from Wayland parish

Father Ronald L. Bourgault, pastor of St. Zepherin Parish in the Cochituate section of Wayland since Nov. 22, 1999 has been granted senior priest/retirement status and will retire from the pastoral administration of the parish effective June 30, 2008. The announcement was made recently by Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley.

Father Bourgault was born on Aug. 14, 1938 in Salem. His theological studies were at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome while he was a student at Rome’s North American College. He was ordained to the priesthood in the Eternal City on Dec. 18, 1963.

He returned to the archdiocese and was assigned as an assistant at St. John the Evangelist Parish in Beverly. In May 1968 he was named an assistant at Brighton’s St. Columbkille where he served for the next 10 years. Between May 1978 and January 1979 he served as the administrator of St. Andrew Parish in Billerica. He entered a team ministry at St. Stephen Parish in Framingham. Named administrator of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Lawrence he remained in that position until Cardinal Bernard Law named him pastor of St. Mary Parish in Quincy on July 1, 1988.

On Nov. 22, 1999 Cardinal Law named him pastor of St. Zepherin Parish in Wayland. Father Bourgault has earned the reputation as man of great understanding and compassion in his various parish assignments and at the same time is a mild mannered and gentle, but steady, leader.

During a particularly difficult point in his own and the parish’s life, Father Bourgault showed incredible humility, patience and willingness to forgive. His already high marks as an outstanding and caring priest were only magnified. He is dearly loved and will be greatly missed at Wayland.

Father Bourgault plans to retire to his own residence in late June.