BOSTON – On Sunday, May 17, CatholicTV will air a special Baccalaureate Mass celebrated by Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley, in recognition of the thousands of Catholic high school seniors who are graduating this year but are unable to gather due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Superintendent Thomas W. Carroll will offer remarks to the 2020 graduates at the conclusion of this special Mass.
The Mass will air on CatholicTV on Sunday, May 17, 2020, at 11 a.m. from the Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
Lectors from Cathedral High School are Joausto Carvalho Teixeira ’20 and Fatima Caceres ’20. For the Mass program click here.
“Congratulations to the thousands of Catholic school seniors in the Archdiocese of Boston who are graduating and completing their studies this year,” said Cardinal Seán. “We are very proud of your accomplishments and inspired by your many acts of mercy built on a foundation of faith. In fact, it is faith that allows us to discover the meaning of things and their value. Faith allows us to discover God’ s love and to discover who we are, why we are here, and what our mission is, our purpose in life. Faith helps us to understand the difference between right and wrong, between love and selfishness.”
“I join with Cardinal Seán in extending congratulations to our Class of 2020,” said Superintendent Carroll. In closing remarks to the graduates, he will offer that “Today’s graduates inspire us that — when this pandemic is all over — our future is in good hands.” In offering advice for graduates, he will say, “Sometimes are times for protest. Today, however is your time to “be still” as is said in Psalm 46. Reflect on where you are going, where God wants you to go. We wish you all great success in what you do and where you go from here. Whether college, a trade, the military or ultimately a religious vocation. No matter your path, remember always: your parents’ sacrifices; who you are; and perhaps most importantly WHOSE you are. Always leave room for God in your life.”
Dennis M. Duggan, Jr., Esq. ’70, President, Archbishop Williams High School, said, “We at Archbishop Williams applaud Cardinal Seán’s decision to celebrate a Baccalaureate Mass for all archdiocesan high school seniors. At Williams, our Baccalaureate liturgy takes place on Commencement eve, and concludes with a cherished tradition — the blessing of alumni pins, which are presented to the graduates in a receiving line of all alumni in attendance. In light of the current coronavirus-related restrictions, our students will be unable to gather for this highlight of their Senior Week. I’m confident that they will take comfort in this opportunity to gather virtually to reflect on their years together and to contemplate their commencement along with other, similarly situated Boston-area Catholic school graduates.”
Dan Carmody, Head of School, Cathedral High School, said, “For so many families, coming together for a Baccalaureate Mass is a rite of passage; it represents the culmination of years of high school dedication, triumphs, challenges, and ultimately of accomplishment and pride. For our students at Cathedral, while we hope this celebratory Mass helps encapsulate their high school career, we also hope that they experience it as a launching pad for their never-ending journey as disciples of God. We’re grateful to Cardinal O’Malley, and the Archdiocese of Boston, for prioritizing this occasion for our students during such a challenging time. Our high school seniors represent the future leadership of our city, country and world — it’s fitting that we send them off in prayer.”
Catholic school students from across the Archdiocese of Boston have been accepted to a diverse cross-section of colleges and universities. For a sample list of these schools click here.
In his homily the Cardinal will tell graduates that commencement means “a beginning.” He will add, “Your life after graduation in many ways is a new beginning. You are making this new beginning in a time of great uncertainty and confusion but hopefully the ideals and values nurtured by your Catholic faith will lend you the courage and wisdom you will need for decisions that lie ahead.”
Cardinal Seán will provide this advice to graduates, “Sometimes when we perform the work of charity or mercy or when we make a sacrifice to promote a more just society, we think we are doing God a favor. Actually, we are climbing that mountain of love, that leads to the only authentic human fulfillment, to real happiness and to salvation. Never tire of climbing that mountain.