From Cardinal Seán's blog

Last Friday, I met at the cathedral with the Archbishop Joseph Vu Van Thien of Hanoi, who came accompanied by some of his priests and seminarians. We have a very good relationship with the Archdiocese of Hanoi, and he came to see me because he has had seminarians studying at St. John's Seminary and would like to send more in the future.

It was nice to have this opportunity to meet him and to speak with him about the situation of the Church in Vietnam and their hopes for the future.

New construction

That afternoon, I was very happy to attend the groundbreaking of the new building for St. Benedict's Classical Academy in Natick.

They had some renderings of what the building is supposed to look like when it is completed, and it looks just stunning.

Headmaster Jay Boren is doing a fabulous job, and their enrollment has grown consistently. We need a Catholic school in Natick, and we're very glad that they are there. Father Peter Stamm has been acting as their chaplain, and the priests of St. Patrick's Parish have also been very supportive.

Evening prayer and dinner

That evening, I had evening prayer and dinner with our transitional deacons who were to be ordained to the priesthood the following day. It was an opportunity to pray and spend time with them. It's also the time when I give them their assignments and faculties for after their ordination.

I also gave them a gift of sacred oils because the anointing of the sick will be an important part of their priestly ministry.

The Sacrament of Confirmation

Sunday, I went to the Madonna Queen Shrine in East Boston to celebrate confirmations for the Brazilian community.

It was a very large group of several dozen confirmands.

The Don Orione Fathers are doing a wonderful job at the shrine with their ministries to the Hispanic, Brazilian, and Italian communities.

I was very impressed to see that they have also developed a program for autistic children, which is a great blessing. The new director there, Father Marcio, has some experience with this, and they are doing very well with it.

It was a wonderful celebration, and it's always a joy to be able to celebrate these confirmations.

Boston College

On Monday, I attended the commencement exercises at Boston College.

The commencement speaker this year was Ukrainian Ambassador Oksana Markarova. She is a very impressive person and gave a very stirring address.

Her presence was certainly very timely, given the fact that President Zelenskyy had just been with the Holy Father about a week ago and that the Holy Father is trying to promote conversations that could lead to the de-escalation of the war in Ukraine.

Service Week

Wednesday, I went to St. John the Baptist Church in Quincy to visit our employees who were taking part in our annual Service Week. This is a week we set aside each year, during which teams of staff members from the Pastoral Center volunteer to help beautify one of our local parishes.

This year, they were working at the churches of St. J's Collaborative in Quincy, where Father Matt Williams is pastor. There was quite a crew there, and they did a lot of landscaping and painting. There were about 20 or so staff members present, though, over the course of the week, more than 100 volunteers participated.