After almost seven years as Director of Formation for the Permanent Diaconate I will be leaving my position at the end of August to dedicate more time to family needs and pastoral ministry. It has been a privilege and joy to serve Cardinal Sean, the diaconate community, and the many holy and generous men and their wives and families who offer themselves to the ministry of Christ's service in the world. It is a blessing to be in the company of such amazing people and to see the work of the Holy Spirit made manifest in their lives. I am humbled to be in their company and serve them. I also offer my deepest, heartfelt thanks to the entire diaconate community – it is through your prayers and support that the program bears fruit. It is also through your compassionate ministry in the Archdiocese that vocations are stirred in the hearts of God’s people – vocations to the diaconate and vocations to lives of holy service within the laity.
Msgr. Bill Fay will be named the Interim Director of Formation until a new deacon director of formation is appointed by the Cardinal. Thank you for your continued prayers for all those in formation, in particular for the 12 candidates to be ordained on October 17, 2015.
In peace and gratitude,
Cardinal Seán will present 116 Cheverus Award Medals to lay persons, deacons and religious during a 3 pm Vespers Service this Sunday, November 23, at the Cathedral of The Holy Cross. First presented in 2008 at the conclusion of the Archdiocese’s bicentennial, the annual award recognizes Catholics for their dedicated service to the Church. The medal is named for the city’s first bishop, Jean-Louis Lefebvre de Cheverus, who led the diocese from 1808 until his return to France in 1824. Bishop Cheverus died in 1836 as the archbishop of Bordeaux. The oval-shaped medal is made of sterling silver and bears a likeness of Bishop Cheverus based on the Gilbert Stuart portrait. On the reverse side is Bishop Cheverus’ coat of arms.
The medal recipients are chosen for their service to the Church and God’s people. Most recipients are nominated by their pastor, forwarded by their area vicar and approved by their regional bishop and Cardinal O’Malley. Some recipients are personally selected by Cardinal O’Malley. Each year, one third of the parishes of the archdiocese are asked to nominate a parishioner, therefore most parishes will have one honoree every three years. The criteria given to pastors is that the nominee should be a lay person who has served the parish well over an extended period of time and has done so in a quiet, unassuming and, perhaps, unrecognized fashion.
The Regional Bishops each year are asked to nominate from their respective regions a religious and a deacon of similar qualifications to be honored with the Cheverus medal. The Central Ministries of the Archdiocese also make nominations from among religious, deacons and lay persons who serve on Archdiocesan committees or lead important ministries.
There is no limit to the number of family members and friends who can join the honoree at the Cathedral. The presence of the pastor and a delegation of parishioners is warmly encouraged to help underline the appreciation and gratitude of the parish towards the honoree.
We congratulate the five deacons of the Archdiocese who will receive the award this Sunday:
Deacon Marcio O. Fonseca
Deacon James Greer
Deacon John W. Pepi
Deacon Luis Rivera
Deacon Kenneth N. Ryan
For more information on the Award and for a list of previous award recipients, please visit http://www.bostoncatholic.org/cheverusawards.aspx. Please also see the most recent edition of The Pilot regarding the awards http://www.thebostonpilot.com/article.asp?ID=13991.