Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

As we celebrate the 175th Anniversary of the Archdiocese, we look back… on July 17, 1891 when Bishop Lawrence S. McMahon dedicated St. Bernard Church, Enfield.
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‘Uncle Vanya’

NEW YORK – Classic Stage Company will present "Uncle Vanya" from Jan. 17 through March 1 with a starry cast of young performers.

The cast includes Peter Sarsgaard, who just finished honing his Chekhovian chops on the recent successful Broadway production of "The Seagull," film actress Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mamie Gummer and a couple of veterans, Denis O’Hare and Louis Zorich.

The production will be directed by Austin Pendleton. Classic Stage Company is at 136 E 13th Street between Fourth and Third Avenues, just southeast of Union Square. Information is available at or (212) 677-4210, ext. 10.

‘Hedda Gabler’

The last "Hedda Gabler" I saw was a few years ago at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, in German, with subtitles, and it was the best "Hedda Gabler" I’d encountered in a lifetime of theatergoing.

"Hedda Gabler," by Henrik Ibsen,is an enormously difficult assignment for even the most experienced actress. The Roundabout Theatre Company has certainly hired an actress who should be up for the job: Mary Louise Parker, who has successfully tackled movies, television and theater, winning a Tony Award for proof.

This "Hedda Gabler" will be directed by Ian Rickson, who also directed the aforementioned Broadway production of "The Seagull."

Roundabout’s production, which began on Jan. 6, will extend to March 28 at the American Airlines Theatre, 227 W. 42nd St. Information is available at or (212) 719-1300.

The Bridge Project at BAM

Once again, the Brooklyn Academy of Music is serving up the best in classical theater.

The Bridge Project is the brainchild of the British theater and film director Sam Mendes, who is putting together a company of 50 percent American and 50 percent British actors to perform classic plays.

The inaugural season will include Chekhov’s "The Cherry Orchard" in a new adaptation by Tom Stoppard, and a fresh look at one of Shakespeare’s rarely produced plays, "The Winter’s Tale."

The American contingent of actors will include Josh Hamilton, Richard Easton and Ethan Hawke, while the Brits will include Simon Russell Beale, Rebecca Hall and Sinead Cusack.

"The Cherry Orchard" began Jan. 2 and plays until March 8. "The Winter’s Tale" runs from Feb. 10 to March 8.

Schedules and information are available at or (718) 636-4100.

alertAt the Spring Assembly of the U.S. bishops, Cardinal Joseph Tobin suggested that a delegation ofbishops go to the border to see for themselves what was happening to newly arrived immigrants, families and children. On July 1 and 2, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. bishops conference, and five other bishops conducted a pastoral visit to the diocese of Brownsville, Texas. Stops included Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle with the community, a visit to anHHS/OBR Shelter and Mass for the families there, a visit to the Customs and Border Patrol processing center in McAllen, TX, and a press conference at the end of their visit. Catholic News Service accompanied the bishops on their border trip. 

  1. Backgrounder and analysis of the bishops’ trip to the border: Cardinal DiNardo told CNS, “You cannot look at immigration as an abstraction when you meet” the people behind the issue.
  2. At final press conference, Cardinal Daniel Dinardo said the church was willing to be part of any conversation to find humane solutions because even a policy of detaining families together in facilities caused “concern.”
  3. Bishops serve soup to immigrant families at a center run by Catholic Charities and listen to their stories. Scranton Bishop Joseph Bambera said he found hope in hearing the people in the room talk about what’s ahead. They didn’t speak of making money but of finding safety for their children, he said, driven by “the most basic instinct to protect your family.”
  4. At an opening Mass he Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle-National Shrine near McAllen, Texas, Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville told Massgoers, “The bishops are visiting here so they can stop and look and talk to people and understand, especially the suffering of many who are amongst us,”

A delegation of U.S. bishops goes on a fact-finding mission at the U.S.-Mexican border to learn more about Central American immigration detention.

Following their visit to an immigrant detention center, U.S. bishops said they are even more determined to call on Congress for comprehensive immigration reform.