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 16, 1978 when the first Mass was held at St. Monica Church, Northford.
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WEST HARTFORD – Sister Mary J. (Michael Joseph) Breen of the Sisters of Mercy died suddenly on Oct. 29, 2010, at St. Mary Home.

She was born on Jan. 1, 1924, in Waterbury, a daughter of Michael and Catherine (Corrigan) Breen.

She entered the Sisters of Mercy on June 27, 1941, at the age of 17, and, two and a half years later, professed her vows.

She earned Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees and a sixth-year certificate from St. Joseph College in West Hartford as well as a certificate in administration from Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven.

She taught in Catholic elementary and high schools throughout the state, including at St. Joseph in Danbury; Mount St. Joseph Academy in West Hartford; and St. Rose in Meriden, where she was the principal for 12 years.

She then became a guidance counselor at Lauralton Hall in Milford.

She retired in 1999 to Mercy-knoll, where she volunteered as a receptionist.

She also volunteered at the School for Young Children and at the Center for Reflection, Education and Action, both in Hartford.

Sister Mary’s three brothers, Joseph, John and George, predeceased her. She is survived by her sister, Sarah (Sally) Frost of The Woodlands, Texas, several nieces and nephews, and the Mercy community.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on Nov. 4 in the chapel at St. Mary Home Chapel. Burial was on Nov. 5 in St. Mary Cemetery.

Donations in Sister Mary’s memory may be made to the Sisters of Mercy, 55 E. Cedar St., Newington, CT 06111.

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.