Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

Monday, June 25, 2018

Brescia sml ab retDr. Michael J. Brescia

BLOOMFIELD – A pioneer in the area of caring for the dying will speak at a brunch and reception on Oct. 28 at St. Mary Church Hall, 5 Hillhouse Ave., New Haven.

Dr. Michael J. Brescia, executive director of Calvary Hospital in New York, will discuss "The Mission and Meaning of Care for the Dying."

Calvary Hospital is the only fully accredited acute-care specialty hospital in the United States that exclusively provides palliative care for adult patients with advanced cancer.

The brunch will follow the Archdiocese of Hartford’s second annual White Mass, which will be celebrated at 10 a.m. at St. Mary Church. Archbishop Henry J. Mansell will be the principal celebrant.

Dr. Judith Mascolo, president of the Connecticut Guild of the Catholic Medical Association, one of the event’s sponsors, said by e-mail that Dr. Brescia’s talk, like the Mass, is open to the public.

"We are hoping to attract a secular audience, since we think many non-Catholic doctors and nurses would be interested in hearing Dr. Brescia's talk" because of Calvary Hospital’s unique mission, she wrote.

"Their philosophy emphasizes nonabandonment of care and addresses all the physical, medical and social needs of the patient and families," wrote Dr. Mascolo, who has a family practice in West Hartford. "Life is celebrated, even in the end stages."

Other co-sponsors of the event are the Archdiocese of Hartford; Pope John Paul II Bioethics Center at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell; and St. Luke Society, an association of physicians in Greater New Haven who meet at St. Mary’s.

Dr. Brescia, a kidney specialist, is known in the medical community for his contributions to the development of a revolutionary procedure in 1966 that still is a milestone in the treatment of kidney disease; it made hemodialysis accessible to millions of patients anywhere and at any time.

The White Mass honors the service of physicians, nurses and other health care providers and administrators.

Organizers are recommending reservations for the brunch and reception. The cost is $25 or $15 for students. Oct. 12 is the reservation deadline.

Information and reservation forms are available at


The Connecticut Guild of the CMA was organized in April 2011 to provide greater opportunity for Catholic physicians and health care providers to share their unique mission, experience, values and faith through educational, social and collaborative programs.

The White Mass is named for the white coats and clothing traditionally worn by health care professionals.