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 22, 1960 when ground was broken for St. Philip Church, East Windsor.
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Family-Day-2014-poster-rev-webDrawing by Jessica Zanca, Epiphany Parish, Cheshire

BLOOMFIELD – Archbishop Leonard P. Blair is encouraging families throughout the Archdiocese of Hartford to share a meal as a family on Sept. 22 as part of the national observance of Family Day.

“The purpose is simple but very important: to be together at table and to enjoy each other’s company in a spirit of familial faith and love, unity and joy,” Archbishop Blair wrote in a pastoral letter distributed recently.

The archdiocese has participated in the national initiative of the Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASAColumbia) since 2011.

Is your family planning to celebrate Family Day? If so, please send your plans to us at

In his letter, Archbishop Blair points out that studies show that sharing a meal as a family has significant impact on the lives of the family members, especially children. Research shows that children who eat regularly with their parents are less likely to smoke or engage in using alcohol and drugs.

“I encourage all families in the Archdiocese to participate in this national initiative. And please don’t forget to say grace before the meal, something which is often neglected these days. May our efforts be blessed, and help us to appreciate better the wonderful gift of Christian family life,” he wrote.

The pastoral letter is posted on the archdiocesan website ( along with homiletic resources, bulletin announcements, a meal prayer, poster and Prayers of the Faithful.

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.