Last Wednesday (9/19), I paid a visit to the Middlesex County Jail in Cambridge. Sheriff Peter Koutoujian is very interested in the different faith communities helping with ministry to the prisoners. The Catholic Church has a very active ministry there with Michael Charchaflian and Father Richard Deshaies. I celebrated Mass for the inmates and then went to visit the cellblocks as well as those in solitary confinement. We were very impressed by their very beautiful Chapel. My understanding is that the jail was built about 50 years ago. At that time, I suppose it was a very modern structure. The Protestant chaplain, who is the chief of chaplains at the jail, was there as well and was very welcoming to us. We were also very surprised at how overcrowded the jail is. There are plans to relocate for that reason. I believe they have a population that is approximately twice the facilities capacity. This is of course a great concern for the Sheriff.
Visit to Anna Maria College
On Thursday (9/20) I visited Anna Maria College in Paxton. I was asked to give a talk on evangelization and Catholic education at the convocation to begin the academic year. I was accompanied by Bishop McManus, the Bishop of Worcester. It was my first visit to the college and I was very impressed by the campus and their desire to promote the Catholic identity of the school. I met several of the Sisters of Saint Anne, the community that founded Anna Maria College in 1946. The college actually began in the Archdiocese of Boston, it was located in Marlborough, and then in 1952 went out to the Diocese of Worcester. To this day, the order still has a convent in Marlborough. During my visit they also very graciously bestowed me with an honorary doctorate of theology.
Religious Women anniversaries