Sisters of St. Joseph honor Jim and Mary Judge at annual dinner

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BRIGHTON -- Nearly 500 friends, former students, and supporters packed the Ballroom at Boston's Seaport Hotel on April 19, for the fourth annual "Living the Dream" Dinner which supports the Sisters of St. Joseph and honored Jim and Mary Judge with the "Dear Neighbor" Award.

In accepting the honor, presented by President of the Sisters of St. Joseph Sister Rosemary Brennan, Jim Judge said, "I credit my success to my moral compass and Catholic upbringing."

He continued by referencing the work of the Sisters of St. Joseph and commenting, "You work tirelessly for the dignity of others. Your programs make an extraordinary contribution to the greater Boston area. Your core values of gracious hospitality, love and service of the 'dear neighbor' without distinction, peaceful resolution of conflict, care for all God's creation are values shared by Eversource."

"Family and faith first" is a personal motto for the Judges and has guided their commitment to their "dear neighbors" in the greater Boston community. Now President and CEO of Eversource Energy, New England's largest utility, Jim and Mary Judge both grew up in Dorchester. They have always been generous of heart, giving in spirit and fiercely committed to making sure communities across our region are healthier, stronger, and able to secure a brighter future for children and families.

Featured during the dinner was a video entitled: "One Foot Forward" which highlighted Sisters Betty Cawley, Ann Grady, and Denise Kelly and their work as actively retired sisters, demonstrating how the sisters continue to put "one foot forward" ready to respond to the "dear neighbor" and the changing needs of changing times.

The guest speaker for the evening was Deb Chausse, executive director of House of Hope, Inc. in Lowell.

Chausse spoke about the impact of the Sisters of St. Joseph on her life.

"I was taught by the Sisters of St. Joseph that leadership is both a gift and a responsibility, and that how I lead is far more important than the outcome of my leadership. It has been my great blessing to have the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph to guide me, the formation that I received as a young woman and the many individual Sisters who have always believed in, assisted and supported my efforts," Chausse said.

"So here I am -- humbled to be invited by my dear sisters to share a bit about the influence the congregation has had on my life. I hope you have heard that the charism and the Congregation has been the foundation of my life and of my service. I suspect the same could be said by many attendees at this fourth annual Living the Dream Dinner," she continued.

Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley was also present and expressed gratitude for the scores of Catholic schools the sisters have staffed and the thousands upon thousands of children whose lives have been touched.

Karen Holmes Ward, director of public affairs, community services, and host of City Line at WCVB Channel 5 was emcee for the evening.

In her remarks, Holmes Ward pointed out how the Sisters of St. Joseph are sponsoring significant ministries in the archdiocese and commented that, "many sisters who are, 'supposedly' retired, continue to reach out and respond in simple and, at times, hidden ways. As leaders in education, the Sisters of St. Joseph have staffed over 130 educational institutions and are responsible for having educated many of those who lead businesses and government in Boston today -- like many of you here tonight!"

The dinner, co-chaired by Joe Baerlein and Joe Nolan, raised nearly $900,000 to assist in the support of the retired sisters, many of whom continue in active ministry through volunteer services, as well as in the care of other elderly and infirm sisters.

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