The Cheverus Award Medal is made of sterling silver and bears a likeness of Bishop Cheverus based on the Gilbert Stuart portrait. On the reverse side is Bishop Cheverus' coat of arms. Pilot file photo/Gregory L. Tracy
BRAINTREE -- Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley will present 121 Cheverus Award Medals to laypersons, deacons and religious during a 3 p.m. service on Nov. 18 at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
First presented in 2008 at the conclusion of the archdiocese's bicentennial, the annual award recognizes Catholics for their dedicated service to the Church. The medal is named for the city's first bishop, Jean-Louis Anne Magdelaine Lefebvre de Cheverus, who led the diocese from 1808 until his return to France in 1824. Bishop Cheverus died in 1836 as the Archbishop of Bordeaux.
The oval-shaped medal is made of sterling silver and bears a likeness of Bishop Cheverus based on the Gilbert Stuart portrait. On the reverse side is Bishop Cheverus' coat of arms.
The medal recipients are chosen for their service to the Church and God's people. Most recipients are nominated by their pastor, forwarded by their area vicar and approved by their regional bishop and Cardinal O'Malley. Some recipients are personally selected by Cardinal O'Malley.
Each year, one third of the parishes of the archdiocese are asked to nominate a parishioner, therefore most parishes will have one honoree every three years. The criteria given to pastors is that the nominee should be a lay person who has served the parish well over an extended period of time and has done so in a quiet, unassuming and, perhaps, unrecognized fashion.