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From Cardinal Seán’s blog

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Posted: 5/29/2009

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On Thursday evening (May 14) we celebrated a Mass marking the 50th anniversary of the presbyteral ordination of the class of 1959. Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy


Last Thursday (May 14), we celebrated Mass with the consecrated virgins in the archdiocese. The Mass was offered for Jane Claire Forte, a consecrated virgin who passed away recently.

Boston has one of the larger groups of consecrated virgins in the United States. This ancient order in the Church was restored after the Second Vatican Council and sought women who consecrate themselves in celibacy to a deeper life of prayer and service in the Church.

Certainly, in today’s world, the witness of the consecrated virgins is more needed than ever. We are very grateful for the women who have come forward and discerned this specific vocation in their lives. Sister Marian Batho, our delegate for consecrated life in the archdiocese, has been very good at helping us to prepare women for this vocation.

Class of 1959

On Thursday evening we celebrated a Mass marking the 50th anniversary of the presbyteral ordination of the class of 1959. The Mass took place at Regina Cleri, the archdiocesan residence for senior priests in Boston. In attendance were 33 priests and, as always, it was a very joyful occasion.

Msgr. Frank Strahan, pastor of St. Bridget’s Parish in Framingham, who was also celebrating his 50th anniversary as a priest, was on hand to lead us in the music program. For him this was not a onetime appearance, since he actually comes every year to sing at this Mass.

I thanked the priests for their many years of service and for their response to the call. I asked them to pray for our upcoming ordination class and for our priests as we embark on the upcoming “Year for the Priest” that will begin next month.

Highland Street Foundation

This past Tuesday I attended a special event on the Tadpole Playground on the Boston Common. This playground was created in 2002 by the Highland Street Foundation in loving memory of David McGrath. It was an appropriate place to celebrate twenty years of the McGrath family providing grants for community groups, through their Highland Street Foundation. On Tuesday the McGrath’s awarded twenty nonprofit groups a $100,000 grant, to assist them in the important work of meeting the needs of children, families, seniors and the homeless.

Also, the Foundation announced that it is sponsoring Ten Free Fridays, a program that allows Boston residents to visit a local museum and other attractions for free on each of ten Fridays this summer.

JoAnn McGrath and her family have been, and continue to be, very generous to the Archdiocese’s many agencies, programs and services. I am grateful for the support and friendship of JoAnn and her family.

We were very happy to be a part of that celebration. The mayor, lieutenant governor and I were all there to accompany the McGrath family. It was a beautiful day and there were many children in attendance from the various recipient organizations. Organizers were giving out cotton candy, popcorn and balloons--the kids had a wonderful time.