This is the final week for our Summer Seminarian Patrick Ryan. Next Sunday his ten weeks with us at OLM ends! Patrick will get a couple weeks off to spend time with his family before heading back to studies for the priesthood at Our Lady of Providence Seminary and Providence College. His time with us seems to have gone very quickly but very smoothly. It has been great to have Patrick at OLM over these ten weeks.
I hope you have had a chance to meet him and talk with him. Patrick has another year of philosophy studies and then he will be assigned to a Major Seminary for theological studies. Over these ten weeks he has been tremendously helpful at the parish. He has worked with our school student and young people of our Youth Group, made visits to our many shut-ins, visited nursing homes, worked with the Legion of Mary, served Mass, worked at the Vacation Bible School, written excellent columns (be sure to read this week’s column!), and led committal services at St. Patrick Cemetery.
He has also spent considerable time working along side Fr. Barrow and myself. From learning about parish paperwork to coming to emergency calls at the hospital and nursing homes, he’s had an excellent introduction into the life and ministry of a parish priest. Of course part of that introduction is getting to know and serve the parishioners of OLM and I thank you for your kindness in welcoming him to OLM!
Also part of Patrick’s introduction to parish life is living in a Rectory with priests. He is excellent company and he likes to watch the Red Sox win!! In between theological and philosophical discussions with Fr Barrow and Fr Connors, I did manage to teach Patrick how to play Hi-Lo Jack! Don’t worry he hasn’t taken up cigar smoking yet!
Next Sunday we will acknowledge his time with us at a “Farewell Reception” in Mercy Park following the 10:30am Mass. I hope you can stop by and offer Patrick your best wishes. He is to be at all Masses next weekend so if you cannot make the reception please be sure to greet him after Mass. Keep him in your prayers as he continues his path to priesthood and please pray for more vocations to the priesthood in our Diocese of Providence.
You may have read in the bulletin that OLM Outreach is once again helping the children of St. Patrick’s Parish and School with our Annual Back Pack Drive. Beginning next weekend we are collecting school supplies. A complete list of needed supplies is in the bulletin. Any donated supplies can be left in the bins in the vestibule or dropped off at the OLM Outreach Office at Mercy House.
You can also make financial donations to this effort with checks payable to “OLM” with “Backpack Drive” written in the memo. Any monetary donations can be put in an envelope and placed in the collection baskets at Masses or sent to the Parish Office. I am grateful to OLM Parishioners, Kathy Hall and Mary Anne Weaver, who are leading the drive again this year. All of these much needed school supplies will be packed into backpacks and then delivered to St. Patrick’s Church in Providence during the week of August 13th.
Fr. James Ruggeri. the Pastor of St. Patrick Church, is always so grateful for the support of OLM. His many parishioners and the students at St. Patrick’s School truly benefit greatly from your generous charity. In their name, I thank you for your generous support of the Annual Backpack Drive. Our OLM Outreach benefits so greatly from your generous weekly financial support as well as the weekly donations of food items for the Food Pantry.
There is truly great need in our society of charitable support for the working poor and the impoverished. They aren’t only at St. Patrick’s but also in our local community who need support and assistance. Pope Francis consistently reminds the world with his prophetic message of serving the poor. In one of his writings, he teaches us: “The great danger in today’s world, pervaded as it is by consumerism, is the desolation and anguish born of a complacent yet covetous heart, the feverish pursuit of frivolous pleasures, and a blunted conscience.”
Thanks for your support of OLM Outreach. Do good. Be well. God Bless. Go Sox!