From Cardinal Seán's blog
Friday, I went to Pittsburgh to attend the wake and funeral of one of my classmates, Father Jonathan Williams. The celebration was held at St. Augustine Church, where we made our first professions and were ordained, which was very moving.
Father Jonathan was from Kansas and worked for several years in the Appalachians of West Virginia, in a very rural parish where he lived in a trailer with another one of our classmates. Then, he went off to Papua New Guinea, where he worked for 40 years and was recently the provincial. However, he became sick with Parkinson's and tuberculosis, so he came home. The last time I had an opportunity to see him was a few months ago at our province chapter.
Sunday, I went to St. Rose Parish in Topsfield to celebrate their Family Mass with Father Dan Hennessey and Father Karlo Hocursak. It was very encouraging to see so many young families and such a large number of children.
At the Family Mass, they follow the same practice I had in my parish when I was a priest: They have the Liturgy of the Word with the little children, and then, afterward, they go to another place.
They still had their Christmas decorations up, following the tradition, still observed in many countries, that the Christmas Season extends to Candlemas Day, Feb. 2.
Meeting with seminarians
Monday, I had one of my regular meetings with a class of our seminarians. This time, I met with the group in second theology. As always, we met for Vespers, dinner, and a time of conversation.
I very much enjoy these opportunities to get to know the seminarians better, hear about their ministries in the parishes, and talk to them about issues that are important to them. They were very excited to tell me about the upcoming basketball tournament that will be held in Milwaukee, and I told them that I'm hoping they'll bring a trophy back to the seminary!
Wednesday, I was very happy to visit Malden Catholic, where I celebrated a Mass to mark Catholic Schools Week.
The liturgy was very well celebrated. We were joined by a number of priests, including Fathers John Mulloy, Eric Cadin, Paul Coughlin, and David Campo, as well as MC President John Thornburg and Brother Thomas Puccio.
It was a wonderful visit, and there is a great atmosphere in the school. I was very impressed by how friendly the students were and the social graces they exhibited. I was also happy to see that the school is thriving under their new instructional model. They have an interesting system there, which is not exactly coed but where boys and girls attend classes separately but come together to share resources and attend important events. It's working out very well, and they have almost 800 students enrolled.