Cardinal O'Malley and the incoming class of seminarians for St. John's Seminary pose for a photo at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. Pilot photo/CardinalSeansBlog.org
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On Sunday, I celebrated the Spanish Mass at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
The numbers of people at Mass continue to increase, and I would say that we are getting close to our Spanish Mass attendance before the pandemic. It is very encouraging to see how many people feel confident about returning to church -- and we are so grateful to our teams of volunteers who work so hard to make that possible.
On Monday, we had another meeting of bishops to plan the follow-up to the V Encuentro. The V Encuentro meeting was held in Texas in 2018 and was very much focused on involving Hispanic youth and young adults in the life of the Church.
As I mentioned a few weeks ago, there is a plan to hold a Virtual National Encuentro in October, and all the dioceses that participated in the Texas gathering are being invited to have double the number of participants join us for that virtual encounter.
In our own area, there was a virtual pilgrimage held on the feast of the Assumption for all the dioceses in the region. This was held in place of the pilgrimage to La Salette Shrine in Attleboro that they would normally have had. I understand there were about 5,000 participants -- and it is wonderful to see there was such a great response.
On Tuesday, we had a Zoom meeting of several of the members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.
We continue to make plans for the plenary session of the Commission, which will take place in September. For the plenary, some of the commission members who are in Europe will gather together in Rome, while the rest of us will join the meeting virtually.
We also continue to work on updating the website of the office. This is very important because the website is an instrument that we use to promote best practices and communication on safeguarding issues. It is also vital for providing people throughout the world with translations of different policies and procedures that can be helpful in creating safe environments and responding to challenges of abuse in the Church and in society.
Incoming class of seminarians
Also, that afternoon, we were very happy to be visited at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross by our incoming class of seminarians for St. John's Seminary.
It was very good to have them visit, and we look forward to the reopening of our seminaries next week.
Aid in Beirut, Lebanon
Finally, this week, we shared a message with the parishes of the archdiocese (which can be read on my blog), urging support for Catholic Relief Services' efforts to provide aid in Beirut, Lebanon, following the tragic explosion there. I hope all of you will do what you can to assist our brothers and sisters who are suffering so greatly.
Any support you can provide Catholic Relief Services would be a great help for their work to help the people of Lebanon recover from this tragic occurrence. Donations can be made at: support.crs.org/donate/beirut-explosion.