Dear Parishioners: Our Lady of Mercy was honored with a pastoral visit from Archbishop Diosdado Talamayan, Archbishop Emeritus of Tuguegarao in The Philippines. His Excellency was here to visit our Franciscan Apostolic Sisters whose congregation was founded in his Archdiocese. The now retired Archbishop is spending some time visiting with family and friends in the United States. While at OLM he led spiritual conferences for the Sisters in their Chapel and celebrated Saturday 8:30am morning Mass. We thank him for his episcopal presence in our parish and his concern for Sister Emma and Sister Lourdes and their fellow Sisters at Scalabrini Villa.
Two windows in the Franciscan Sisters’ Convent Chapel that rotted were recently fixed. The tree by the windows that caused the damage to the Convent Chapel was also cut down. I thank Paul Anderson for his hard work in attending to this project for our Sisters. The good Sisters are now able to pray before the Blessed Sacrament in their Convent Chapel without worry. We thank them for their continued prayers for our parish community.
This week Fr. Connors and Fr. Chris Murphy, the Chaplain at Bishop Hendricken High School, are taking a group of young men to St. John’s Seminary in Boston. The group gets a tour the seminary, attends evening prayer and dinner with the seminary community, and meets with the seminarians from the Diocese of Providence. Our own Seminarian Brian Morris and our Summer Seminarian, Eric Silva, help with this visit and answer questions about seminary life and the process of discerning a vocation to the priesthood. I am grateful for their participation in this Vocation Awareness Trip and also Fr. Connors and Fr. Murphy for organizing this opportunity.
Fr. Connors has also organized another great event this coming Thursday at OLM School. It’s called “Grill the Priests” and it is an opportunity for people to ask a panel of priests questions about the Catholic Faith. They can inquire about anything they find curious about the Church or the life of priests.
The panel consists of Fr. Connors, Fr. Murphy, Senior Priest Fr. John Kiley (Pastor Emeritus of St. Francis Church in Warwick), Dominican Friar Fr. Philip Neri Reese of Providence College, and myself. Monsignor Albert Kenny, the Vicar General of the Diocese of Providence, serves as the moderator of the lively conversation. Last year this event was very fun and informative with lots of great questions for the panel. The event is Thursday at 7:00pm and open to the entire OLM Community. Wine, beer and light refreshments are to be served so it is an adults only night. Some great door prizes are to be raffled off as well. Seating is limited and reservations are needed so please contact the Parish Office soon to reserve your spot.
In the name of the entire Parish I offer congratulations to OLM Parishioner Kevin McDevitt who is receiving the 2015 Proudly Pro-Life Award from the RI Right to Life Committee at their Annual Banquet this week. Kevin is to be honored for his unwavering pro-life commitment and conviction in defending all human life especially the life of the unborn. We thank him for being a truly outstanding example of what it means to be Proudly Pro-Life!
This weekend I am away attending the Winter Meeting of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops in Baltimore where I serve as a consultant to the Sub-Committee on the Defense and Promotion of Marriage. I thank our Vocation Director Fr. Carl Fisette for filling in at Masses in my absence. We also warmly welcome our OLM native son, Dominican Fr. Francis Belanger, OP who is the Novice Master of the Dominicans. He is at OLM visiting his family this weekend. Be well. Do good. God Bless. Go Pats!!!