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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PUTNAM – Sister Geraldine Bonenfant, 84, a member of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit, died on May 18 at the Holy Spirit Health Care Center, where she had resided since 1997.

A daughter of the late Alfred and Mary (Petit) Bonenfant, she was born on Feb. 13, 1925, in Augusta, Maine. She entered religious life in 1941 and made her religious profession on Aug. 20, 1945, at Holy Spirit Provincial House in Putnam. She then was known as Sister Alfred du Sacré Coeur.

She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Annhurst College in South Woodstock and was a teacher for most of her religious life. She taught at St. Anne School in Waterbury and St. Anne School in Hartford as well as at schools in Wauregan, Plainfield and Jewett City.

From 1970-72, she was a nursery administrator at Garretson Memorial Day Nursery in Newport, R.I., and then assisted in the libraries at Annhurst College and Putnam Catholic Academy. She taught crafts from 1976-80 at the Wheeler Clinic in Plainville before becoming the activities director at Oakcliff Convalescent Home in Waterbury. From 1991-94, she did pastoral visitations at parishes in Moosup and Dayville.

She is survived by a sister, Priscilla Parr of Farmington; and several nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.

Father Richard Archambault, chaplain, celebrated a Mass of Christian Burial on May 22 in the provincial house chapel.

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.