Hello and welcome!
As I left off last week, we were about to begin our celebrations of the Sacred Triduum. It was wonderful to once again be able to have the faithful present for our liturgies and, I was very encouraged to see that the cathedral was full to capacity for all of our celebrations.
We were so happy to be joined once again this year by the many local university students who came accompanied by Father Kevin Staley-Joyce. It was the largest group they ever had.
Father Kevin had been holding Holy Week celebrations for the students at St. Stephen’s Church in the North End because, ordinarily, the church is only used for Sunday Mass. As part of their Holy Thursday observance, they walked to several different churches, and they concluded their journey at the cathedral to pray Compline with us. Their presence was a great joy.
This year, it features the painting “St. John and St. Peter at Christ’s Tomb” by Giovanni Francesco Romanelli.
The Easter Vigil is traditionally a moment when new Catholics are welcomed into the Church, and it was a great joy to celebrate the baptism of two catechumens at our vigil at the cathedral. We are so grateful to Sister Maria for all her hard work preparing them.
On Easter Sunday, I celebrated the 11:30 a.m. Mass at the cathedral. We also added an additional 8 a.m. Mass, and both were at capacity. It was very encouraging to see the people return for Easter.
This week, on Wednesday, I participated in a virtual panel discussion entitled “La Vacuna de la Esperanza” (“The Vaccine of Hope”) sponsored by SOMOS Community Care. I understand there were over 4,000 physicians from across the United States and Latin America who joined us for the conference, and it was an opportunity to encourage them and answer any questions they may have.
In my remarks, I spoke about some of the ethical questions that the Holy Father has addressed, as well as about the Holy Father’s words in Fratelli Tutti calling for a post-pandemic world that is based more on solidarity and care for people.
During our meeting, we heard a report by Father Paul Soper on the state of COVID in Massachusetts and our plans for the archdiocese going forward.
It was an opportunity for me to express my condolences to the family and be together with them at this difficult time.
Thursday evening, I participated in a virtual seminar hosted by the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors for the Brazilian bishops’ conference. The Brazilian bishops are meeting in these days, and their gathering will conclude with a day of recollection that I will give for them next week.
I was joined by my fellow commission member Teresa Kettelkamp to speak about the situation of the Church and the work of the commission. I also addressed some of the implications of the Holy Father’s motu proprio, Vos Estis Lux Mundi.
The Brazilian bishops’ conference is the largest bishops’ conference in the world, and we were very glad to have the opportunity to address them on this very important topic.
Until next week,