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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lh guatamala1Lauralton student Grace Kais learns how to wash clothes by hand

MILFORD – A group of Lauralton Hall students experienced an adventure of a lifetime on a recent service trip to Guatemala.

The students spent eight days working side-by-side with villagers in Cacabal II, building a three-classroom school. They also learned about geography, economics and social justice and about the Mayan civilization.

The trip was made possible by School the World, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to bring the gift of education to the children of the developing world.  Students were accompanied by Kate Curran, founder of School of the World and a Lauralton alumna, along with Spanish teachers Pat Doerr and Bertha Maiese. 


"The trip was incredible," said Ms. Doerr.  "I am so proud of these young women. They painted concrete, milked cows, made tortillas and taught the children in the school."

Diamante McKay, ’15, was one of the students who made the trip. "My greatest surprise was that I came here wanting to change lives and mine was changed instead," she said. "I was so impressed with all of the people we met. They were very poor, with few material possessions, but they were very rich in spirit."

Senior Regina Magi learned not to take anything for granted, "I am even going to enjoy the paint on my school," she said.

Jillian Shugrue, ’15, spoke along the same lines. "At home I sometimes complain about going to school, yet the girls in Guatemala think it’s the best thing ever, especially as I go to an all-girls' school."

Information about Lauralton Hall’s language department and international trips is available from Ms. Doerr at


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.