Hello and welcome!
Saturday was the Feast of the Assumption, and on that day, I was very happy to go to the house of the Daughters of St. Paul in Jamaica Plain to celebrate the perpetual profession of Sister Khristina Galema.
Sister Khristina was born and raised in the Philippines. As a young adult, she moved to Toronto, where her family still lives. Unfortunately, they were unable to be present because of the international travel restrictions that are in place.
In my remarks, I noted what a rare and special occasion it was to be present for the profession of a religious woman. Of course, we have ordinations every year — not only for diocesan priests but also the Jesuits and other religious — but professions of religious women are few and far between.
I often comment that it is a source of great anxiety for me that here in Boston, where we have the youngest population of any major city in America, so many of our young Catholics have never met a religious woman. So, the profession of a sister is such an important event to highlight the beauty of consecrated life. The witness Sister Khristina is giving and the joy with which she is embracing her vocation to the consecrated life as a Daughter of St. Paul is a great blessing for us and a great source of joy.
We are so grateful for the presence of all the Pauline charisms in our archdiocese, as expressed in the Daughters of St. Paul, the Sister Disciples of the Divine Master, the diocesan priests who belong to their Institute of Christ the Priest and the laypeople who are involved in the Institute of the Holy Family. These are all different manifestations of the charisms of Blessed James Alberione and Venerable Mother Thecla, and we are so blessed by their presence.
I wanted to share this video with you of a “virtual choir” made up of 450 people from 33 countries singing the Salve Regina. The participants made recordings of themselves during quarantine in April, which were then combined into one video that was released at the end of May. Someone shared it with me a little while ago, but the Feast of the Assumption brought it back to mind.
Sunday morning, I celebrated the 11:30 Mass in English at the Cathedral. In recent weeks, I have been celebrating the Spanish Mass, so this was the first time in quite a while that I had the English Mass. I was pleased to see that we had close to 150 people there, which these days is a very good turnout.
This is the week that I would have normally been away with the bishops of the Boston Province for our annual retreat, but I have been trying as best I can to make a private retreat.
I have been watching online videos of conferences given by Cardinal Angelo Comastri, the Archpriest of St. Peter’s Basilica. There are quite a number of his conferences on YouTube, most between half an hour and an hour long. I try to watch two or three a day and use those themes for my meditation.
He was a priest for 67 years, and throughout those decades of ministry, he served the Church in numerous ways. In addition to serving at more than a dozen parishes during his 50 years of active ministry, he was a Navy chaplain and was the first priest personnel director of the archdiocese.
Since he has been in Rome for so long, it was an opportunity for me to show off the beautifully renovated Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
Finally, we were very happy to be part of a wonderful evangelization moment a couple of weeks ago when over 300 people gathered at Our Lady Comforter of the Afflicted Parish in Waltham to see Fatima, the Movie.
Due to a technical glitch, people were unable to see the beautiful video put together by our Mission Office, in which we greet everyone, highlight the importance of the message of Fatima, and ask all Catholics to support the work of missionaries through The Propagation of the Faith.
Fatima, the Movie, is made even more uplifting by the talents of Andrea Bocelli, whose work I admire and enjoy very much. This is a link to some of the score from the film as well as an interview with Andrea Bocelli, as he speaks about how his Catholic faith, and the message of Fatima, inspires his music.
Fatima, the Movie will be available in some theaters and on-demand on Aug. 28.
Until next week,