Regis College holds first Women of Distinction gala

BOSTON — Regis College in Weston, the only remaining Catholic women’s college in the United States, held its first-ever Women of Distinction gala at the Four Seasons Hotel in Boston. The event honored two former presidents of the college, both Sisters of St. Joseph, the order that runs the college.

“Sister Jeanne d’Arc O’Hare and Sister Thérèse Higgins you are extraordinary women for an extraordinary time,” said Regis’ president, Mary Jane England.

“Sister Jeanne d’Arc O’Hare was the best teacher I ever had,” recalled England who graduated from Regis in 1959. “Fifty years ago when I was a student at Mount St. Joseph’s Academy, her history class opened the wide horizons of the world and nourished my longing for knowledge and justice.”

Sister Thérèse has always been an advocate for women, England continued. She gave many honorary degrees to acknowledge the achievements of women who had not yet received national recognition.

“As the Sisters of St. Joseph of Boston, you are women who speak to the future,” she said. “Your legacy at Regis insists on the intelligent participation in the events of the world and our beloved Church.”

Sister Joan Duffy, CSJ, president of the Sisters of Saint Joseph and member of the class of 1965, gave the invocation, saying that the sisters are called to be women of unity and reconciliation. Sisters Jeanne d’Arc and Thérèse were gifted with wisdom and through Regis gave students knowledge, learning and diversity.

Doreen M. Zankowski — master of ceremonies, graduate of the class of 1981 and member of the board of trustees — introduced the honorees.

“Their grace, beauty, integrity, perseverance, and love of learning and nurturing have set them apart and they are truly women of distinction,” she said. “With courage, enormous intellectual curiosity that knew no boundaries, coupled with their vision and never wavering commitment, they defined Regis in the lives of thousands of Regis women who passed through the halls.”

Dinner was followed by remarks from Emily Rooney, the host and executive editor of WGBH-TV’s program Greater Boston, who spoke about what it takes to be a woman of distinction.

“It’s a lot easier in Massachusetts to be a man of distinction. Here we are in the spring of 2005. Almost one year ago today this state approved the first legal same-sex marriages. By any measure this is a liberal state,” she said. “Our entire congressional delegation is Democratic, 100 of the 160 state legislators are Democratic, our big city mayors are Democratic, their challengers are largely Democratic. The only thing missing in this equation, frankly, is the women.”

Rooney said she was stunned that Massachusetts ranks 20th in the percentage of women in the legislature. She then spoke about several women who served or wanted to serve in office.

The speaker was followed by a presentation of diamond pins with the emblem and seal of Regis College to Sisters Jeanne d’Arc and Thérèse. Portraits of each sister were unveiled and will be placed in the Kerns Conference Center at Regis.

Dawn-Marie Driscoll, who graduated from Regis in 1968, introduced Sister Jeanne d’Arc, saying she sent Regis graduates “flying out into the world.”

“We thank you and we love you,” she added.

Sister Jeanne d’Arc said she was honored and accepted the recognition in the name of all the Sisters of St. Joseph who have served Boston since 1873. She was one of five girls in her family who attended Regis and graduated in 1939.

“My Regis education prepared me well for graduate school, for teaching and for living a full life — intellectually, socially and culturally in a diverse and global society,” she said.

Virginia Pyne Kaneb from the class of 1957 introduced Sister Thérèse.

“You have been loved. You have been a model,” she said. “We thank you for everything you have given us.”

Sister Thérèse spoke about her dream of attending Regis, which began at age 10 when she visited her sister at the college.

Six years later when she was ready to attend school, she had to apply to places her family could afford after the death of her father. Regis only gave one scholarship each year, and Sister Thérèse was not the recipient. Her mother urged her to “keep on praying,” she said.

“Unbeknownst to me, she took herself by streetcar from Winthrop to Weston to meet the president of Regis whom she did not know. That day they talked about dreams and how they come true,” she said. “That September 1943 Regis gave two scholarships.”

Sister Thérèse said her mother took on two jobs to pay the difference.

Both her mother and Regis gave her a formula for helping dreams coming true, and the gala is proof that dreams will keep coming true for others, she said.

Each of the two women received a standing ovation after her remarks.

Archbishop Seán P. O’Malley gave the benediction, speaking about the sacrifice religious sisters have made in order to teach. They give their lives in order to pass on the faith.

“As Catholics, we are very proud of our wonderful Catholic school system,” he added.

Be grateful to parents, never insult them, pope says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Honoring mothers and fathers means being grateful for the gift of life and Christians should never insult anyone's parents, Pope ...

Canadian cardinal: Women should help screen, train priest applicants

Poznan, Poland, Sep 18, 2018 CNA.- Increasing the role of women in screening and training priests is among the steps that should be taken to prevent future ...

Vatican delegation will travel to China this month to finalize agreement, Chinese newspaper reports

Beijing, China, Sep 18, 2018 CNA.- A newspaper tied to the Chinese Communist Party reported Tuesday that a delegation of Vatican officials will head to ...

Cardinal Marx says mistakes were made, calls for change in German church

Cardinal Reinhard Marx, head of the German bishops' conference, admitted that mistakes were made in the German church's handling of sex abuse of minors ...

Church crisis response: Healing Masses, listening sessions, fasting

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- In response to the sexual abuse crisis in the church, Catholics are praying for victims, talking about their frustration and anger, ...

Pope names Minnesota priest as auxiliary bishop of Hartford

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Pope Francis has appointed Father Juan M. Betancourt, a priest in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, as auxiliary bishop ...

Listening church: Pope gives new vision for Synod of Bishops

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The Synod of Bishops increasingly should be a structure for listening to the Catholic faithful, demonstrating a local bishop's concern ...

Director of Courage releases letter on Penn. abuse report

Washington D.C., Sep 17, 2018 CNA.- Courage International, an apostolate to support people with same sex-attraction in leading chaste lives, has issued ...

Richmond bishop apologizes to victims; commits to opening, reviewing files

RICHMOND, Va. (CNS) -- In celebrating the Diocese of Richmond's first Mass of Atonement for victims of abuse Sept. 14, Bishop Barry C. Knestout apologized ...

Stanford University to remove saint's name from some properties

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- California's Stanford University will strip the name of 18th-century Franciscan friar, St. Junipero Serra, from some of its properties ...

Catholic Charities distributes disaster relief to areas hit by Florence

RALEIGH, N.C. (CNS) -- The Carolinas were hard hit with record rainfall and flooding rivers from tropical storm Florence since it made landfall Sept. ...

Archbishop Lori assures diocese he's with them in journey toward healing

WHEELING, W.Va. (CNS) -- In his celebration of Mass at the Cathedral of St. Joseph in Wheeling Sept. 15, Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore said ...

Bishop takes a (sky) dive to get pilgrims to Lourdes

HOVE, England (CNS) -- "The Moth has landed," tweeted the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton. The tweet Sept. 14 and a similar post on the diocesan Facebook ...

Words, promises are not enough to prevent abuse, archbishop says

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Inviting presidents of the world's bishops' conference to the Vatican to discuss abuse prevention reflects an understanding that ...

Pope praises Capuchin order's charism of authenticity, simplicity

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Capuchins are called to be men of peace, reconciliation and prayer and to be close to all people, Pope Francis told members of the ...

Path to healing starts with seeking forgiveness, Cardinal Wuerl says

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- A "Season of Healing" for sexual abuse survivors began in the Archdiocese of Washington with a Sept. 14 Mass at the Cathedral of St. ...

Archbishop McCarrick's unofficial role in Vatican-China relations

Vatican City, Sep 17, 2018 CNA.- Following reports that the Holy See and the People’s Republic of China could be about to sign an agreement ...

Archbishop Chaput: When we forget faith, we forget our humanity

Spokane, Wash., Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- When man tries to cling to reason and separate himself from faith, he forgets who he is and loses his source of hope, ...

Pope Francis warns priests against living a double life

Palermo, Italy, Sep 15, 2018 CNA/EWTN News.- During a day trip to Sicily Saturday, Pope Francis told priests and religious to fight their vices and strive ...

What is the pontifical secret?

Vatican City, Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- Following the allegations made by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò about the case of Archbishop Theodore McCarrick, ...

Vatican publishes list of synod participants, including papal nominees

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- To the list of members of the Synod of Bishops elected by national bishops' conferences, Pope Francis added cardinals from 14 countries, ...

Addicts and their loved ones talk about life with opioid addiction

ARLINGTON, Va. (CNS) -- It was a Saturday night, and Billy was eating pizza and watching a sporting event in the basement bedroom of his residence, a ...

Signers of letter hope Vatican meeting will bring needed steps on crisis

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Signers of an open letter from Catholic women to Pope Francis urging "truth" and "transparency" on the growing sex abuse crisis expressed ...

Community 'overwhelmed and shell-shocked' after gas explosions, says pastor

LAWRENCE -- Volunteers at St. Patrick Church's Cor Unum Meal Center were serving dinner when multiple natural gas explosions and fires broke out in homes ...

Down to earth: Vatican brings together world's meteorite curators

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy (CNS) -- Rocks, mineral debris and even dust from space are kept in special collections, museums and laboratories all over the ...

Algerian martyrs to be beatified in Algeria Dec. 8

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The beatification of 19 martyrs of Algeria, including the seven Trappist monks of Tibhirine, will be celebrated Dec. 8 in Oran, ...

'Anything but a picnic' - Cardinal Dolan on the Church's summer of scandal

New York City, N.Y., Sep 14, 2018 CNA.- Cardinal Timothy Dolan has spoken about how the extended sexual abuse scandals facing the Church have taken a ...

Restoring and reimagining: Transformation at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross

BOSTON -- Considered by many to be the heart of the Archdiocese of Boston, the Cathedral of the Holy Cross is the largest Catholic church in New England, ...

Archdiocese says Cardinal O'Malley will personally review all abuse letters

BRAINTREE (CAN) -- The Archdiocese of Boston has announced changes to the way it will process and respond to letters addressed to Cardinal Séan P. ...

CM receives $2.5M grant from Yawkey Foundations

West Roxbury -- Catholic Memorial, a college-preparatory school for boys in grades 7 to 12, announced Sept. 5 that they have received a $2.5 million grant ...

Father Christian Ohazulume removed from ministry

BRAINTREE -- The Archdiocese announced on Sept. 11 that it had removed a priest from ministry after receiving an allegation that he sexually abused a ...

From Cardinal Seán's blog

This week I am in transit to Rome in anticipation of the next meeting of the C9 Council of Cardinals. So, I have asked Vivian Soper to share some reflections ...

Kavanaugh's birth control comments spur controversy -- What did he say?

Washington D.C. (CNA) -- Opponents of Judge Brett Kavanaugh have suggested that a reference to birth control pills as "abortion-inducing drugs" during ...

Missouri to enforce abortion regulations in wake of appeals court ruling

Jefferson City, Mo. (CNA) -- Missouri's health department announced Monday that it will immediately being enforcing state laws regulating abortion clinics ...