From left: Father Brian Flynn, Father Brian Smith and Father Matthew Williams. Pilot file photo
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Just before the Christmas break, The Pilot announced three appointments that Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley had made giving new assignment to three of the archdiocese’s youngest priests -- all of whom were ordained in 2003.
A new team ministry has been formed at St. Edith Stein Parish in Brockton with Father Brian Smith named as moderator of the team and his former classmate Father Brian Flynn as member of the team. The effective date for the new team’s appointment in Brockton was Jan. 7, 2008.
Father Matthew Williams, up until now parochial vicar at St. Mary Parish in Dedham was named director of the newly-created Office for the New Evangelization of Youth and Young Adults. Father Williams’ appointment was effective Jan. 1, 2008.
Father Brian Smith
A native of Weymouth and a son of Sacred Heart Parish there, Father Smith is the son of Donald and Virginia (Bailey) Smith. He attended local schools and graduated from Weymouth North High School. He was granted a bachelors degree in English from Bridgewater State College. He entered St. John’s Seminary and on completion of his seminary studies he was ordained on May 24, 2003 at Holy Cross Cathedral by Bishop Richard Lennon, then apostolic administrator of the archdiocese.
Pilot readers will likely recall that during Father Smith’s seminary studies he worked at The Pilot and was a much appreciated staff member putting to good use his college degree, his evident love of the Church and his eagerness to get to know the archdiocese in its many people and parishes, agencies and apostolates.
Following his ordination he was named parochial vicar at St. Edward Parish, Brockton and when the parishes in Brockton were reorganized and a new parish created, he was named parochial vicar at the new St. Edith Stein Parish.
He has been a hard worker in Brockton and under the guiding hand of the former pastor, Father James Flavin, he has assumed greater responsibility managing the parish during Father Flavin’s priestly renewal program.
Father Smith brings to the team proven ability, a deep faith and a good sense of humor about himself, but especially a commitment to bringing others to the Lord.
Father Brian Flynn
Father Flynn will be no stranger to Brockton having grown up in neighboring Whitman a son of the Holy Ghost Parish there. He was born in Arlington the second son of Herbert and Patricia (Johnstin) Flynn. He attended local schools and after graduation from Whitman/Hanson Regional High School he studied economics at Boston College. After graduation he worked at Norwood Dodge for 15 years, eight of them as service manager.
Father Flynn’s vocational choice was affected by the young parochial vicar at the Whitman parish, Father Dick Cannon, now pastor at St. John the Baptist, Quincy. Father Flynn completed seminary formation at St. John’s Seminary, and as was Father Smith so Father Flynn was ordained by their former seminary rector, Bishop Lennon on May 24, 2003.
Father Flynn’s first assignment was as parochial vicar at Gate of Heaven Parish in South Boston. That assignment was interesting for many reasons but one stands out. He was assigned to Gate of Heaven but lived at St. Brigid Parish with Father Bob Casey (and several other priests). Father Casey is pastor of both Gate of Heaven and St. Brigid’s and has until now had one parochial vicar assigned for each parish.
Father Flynn has been a diligent worker in the parish and tells us that he’s a “rabid fan of the Patriots and the Red Sox.” While leaving South Boston will be difficult, the newlyformed team in Brockton will bring a new form of service and reunite two classmates for more effective priestly ministry.
Father Matthew Williams
Father Matthew Williams is the son of Paul and Ann Marie (Rosano) Williams and a son of Sacred Heart Parish in Weymouth. After graduation from the parish school he attended Xaverian Brothers High School in Westwood and Stonehill College in North Easton.
After he completed seminary formation at St. John’s, Brighton he was ordained at Holy Cross Cathedral by Bishop Lennon in the same class as Fathers Smith and Flynn. Prior to priestly ordination, Father Williams had been a deacon at Immaculate Conception Parish in Newburyport.
If Father Smith is a familiar name to Pilot readers, Father Williams is a familiar face and voice to hundreds if not thousands of teenagers and young people beginning with those at his first assignment at St. Mary Parish, Dedham and expanding across other parishes in the archdiocese and beyond through the Life Teen and Lift programs.
One of Father Williams’ major accomplishments has been to bring a depth of commitment to the faith especially through eucharistic adoration with the young people of the above mentioned programs.
Father Williams generates enthusiasm, and meeting him you sense a man of deep faith but also a man who understands others on their journeys and wants to help you reach the Lord.
In assigning Father Williams to the newly-created position of director of the Office for the New Evangelization of Youth and Young Adults, Cardinal O’Malley is tapping into a proven “resource” and a priest who has deep conviction that young people can be brought to faith with solid formation and living lives of prayer.
Father Williams’ new position is one that has broad definition and he will be responsible -- in collaboration with others and under the cardinal’s direction -- to shaping this new office as it assists those in the critical ministries for the youth and young people who are both today the Church and tomorrow the Church here in the archdiocese.