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 20, 1971 when parishioners settled on a site for the new St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Oxford.
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BETHLEHEM – The Farmstead Festival, “a window into the world of artisan made foods,” will take place at The Gary The Olivia Theater, 249 Flanders Rd. on the grounds of the Abbey of Regina Laudis May 30 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The festival will feature some of the top small farms and artisan food producers in the Northeast United States.

The event will showcase locally made handcrafted cheeses from Cato Corner Farm, Abbey of Regina Laudis Dairy (depending on availability), Artisan Made Northeast, Beltane Farm, Parish Hill Creamery, Woodcock Farm; baked goods from Wave Hill Breads, Middlebury Baking Company, Mayflower Grace Resort & Spa; jams and jellies from Winding Drive; local honey from Hilltop Apiaries; handcrafted chocolates by Philippe Niez; Savor cookies; lamb, beef and pork products from Bethlehem’s own Percy Thomson Meadows Farm; specialty food items from the Str-Eat Italiano Food Truck; and Alpaca wool products from Bella Alpacas. Local area artists will also be displaying their work. All products will be for sale.

Entertainment will be provided by Clay & Wattles Theater Company (introducing its 2015 Season at The Gary-The Olivia Theater), as well as special presentations by Benedictine Sister Noella Marcellino, who will give a talk on the making of the “Cheese Nun” documentary (DVDs of the documentary will be available for purchase).

Mother Dolores Hart will read from her popular autobiography The Ear of the Heart, and copies will be available for Mother Dolores to sign and for individual purchase.

The event takes place in the roofed, open air The Gary-The Olivia Theater, rain or shine. Admission to the festival is $18 purchased online until May 29 at  and $20 at the gate beginning at 10:30 a.m. the day of the festival. Children 12 years and under are admitted free.

The Farmstead Festival is a promotional and fund-raising activity for Clay & Wattles Theater Company and will assist the nonprofit with costs associated with the 2015 season at The Gary The Olivia Theater and with theater maintenance and construction projects.

For further information please go to or e-mail

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.