...I attended the Catholic Charities Laboure Center Annual Spring Benefit at John Hancock Financial in the Seaport District. During the evening, they honored Sister Maryadele Robinson, who is stepping down from the directorship but will continue to work at the Laboure Center, with the Jack Shaughnessy award, which was presented to her by one of Jack Shaughnessy's sons. I was happy to be part of this event supporting the Laboure Center, which provides the community with so many services, such as mentoring and tutoring, after school programs, counseling and family intervention, elder outreach, job training, and recovery connections programs.
That evening (4/30), I went to participate in the Easter Vigil celebration at the Greek Orthodox Metropolis in Brookline. The Greeks, of course, follow the Julian calendar and the provisions of the Nicene Conference -- Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the first full moon following the equinox, following the Jewish Passover. Because of the differences between the Julian and Gregorian calendars, the Eastern Churches celebrated Easter on May 1. So, I was able to be with them for their celebration and the Metropolitan said he has come to like being able to celebrate two Easters, because he comes to our Holy Week celebrations at the Cathedral the Holy Cross. During the Vigil, His Eminence Metropolitan Methodios invited me to address the people, bringing the greetings of the Roman Catholic community. The Metropolitan and I serve on the joint commission set up by the USCCB and the Orthodox bishops of the United States, and we will be meeting later this month at their retreat house in New Hampshire.
I came back from the Vigil at the Orthodox Metropolis at about 1 o'clock in the morning, just in time to be present at the closing part of the Vigil in our own Cathedral with the Ethiopian and Eritrean community who celebrate according to the Ge'ez Rite. They presented me with a gift of a hand cross that the Ge'ez use in the liturgy.
Men's Religious Superiors
Wednesday (5/4), we gathered with the Major Superiors of Men's Religious Communities at the Pastoral Center. We spoke to them about a number of issues concerning religious in the archdiocese, and also had a dialogue and presentation on the Year of Mercy led by Father Jonathan Gaspar.
At the same time as our meeting with the superiors, there was a meeting being conducted by Deacon Jim Greer on the subject of how to respond to situations of trauma, particularly suicide. There are certainly many different kinds of trauma, but certainly suicide is a growing problem -- suicides are up by 25 percent. There were over 100 participants there for the conference and I was very happy to be able to greet them and thank them for their willingness to learn more about this topic and prepare themselves to better serve in our parishes in such an important capacity.
St. James Society board
Wednesday, we had our annual board meeting of the Missionary Society of St. James. We heard reports of some of the good work they are doing, including preparations for the Society's 60th anniversary next year and that there will be five new priests serving the society.