Pastor's Corner

Happy Thanksgiving

11-24-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

What or who do you take for granted? I know, it's hard to think about something you don't think much about! But try… especially at this time of Thanksgiving. There are certainly people and things you and I depend upon that we just expect to be there for us. Maybe it's the person who delivers the newspaper or those who provide emergency services. Mindfulness is important in the process of being thankful. With our busy, frenetic lives, we can go from one thing or person to another and just take, utilize and enjoy without much thought about who and what is behind it's availability and convenience. The immigrant laborer who picked the vegetable or the poor single mother of three who packed your box of chocolates are just two examples. Then, there are those in our own family, parish and neighborhood who serve us in ways we don't think much about – the person(s) who put food on the table, the one who always remembers your birthday, the individual who makes life just a bit easier, cleaner, and more comfortable. May your Thanksgiving be filled with mindfulness, which engenders an uplifted spirit, a sincere gratitude, and a respect for all those whom we might take for granted in the course of our busy lives. I include below a special Thanksgiving Grace, which you can pray before your Thanksgiving meal.


What are your dreams for Holy Family Parish?

11-17-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

What would you like the Catholic Church to be like in 20 years? What would you like Holy Family to be like in 20 years? Many of us would say, I'd like a Church overflowing with bold, generous, committed men, women and children who understand the genius of Catholicism and are striving to live it in every area of their lives. The role that you, your fellow parishioners, our staff and I play here at Holy Family today, tomorrow and in the days ahead will determine what the Church will be like in the future.

God has given us the gift of being able to dream, to look into the future and imagine something different than today, and then, to return to the present and work to make that richly imagined future a reality. It's up to each of us to do that!


Our Mission of Evangelization

11-10-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

Dynamic Catholic has been inspiring Catholics to rediscover the genius of Catholicism through the development of world-class resources and life-changing events for a decade. They will spend the next decade helping parish communities like ours grow and thrive through an initiative called Dynamic Parish. They have invited us to pilot this program in our parish for five years at no cost to us. There are over 15,000 parishes in America and ours is one of just 61 that was selected! During the five years, Dynamic Catholic will invest more than a million dollars in our community through engaging and energizing events, programs, and resources. Parish consultants will walk alongside me and our parish leaders, share best practices and support us at every turn. If you didn't have a chance to view the video from Matthew Kelley and receive the booklet detailing this new initiative, click here. We also have copies of the booklet at the doors of the church for you to take home and read.


Dynamic Parish

11-02-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

Today our parish is announcing the beginning of an exciting new initiative called Dynamic Parish. Dynamic Parish is an effort to help every parish in America not just survive, but to truly become a dynamic parish. It comes to us from the Dynamic Catholic Institute, which was founded in 2008 by Matthew Kelly with the mission of re-energizing the Catholic Church in America through developing world-class resources that inspire people to rediscover the genius of Catholicism. Dynamic Parish seeks to help parishes become truly dynamic through the adoption of best practices and the distribution of these excellent resources. It is designed to help each of us grow in a personal relationship with Jesus, deepen our appreciation of the treasures of our Catholic faith, and strengthen our ability to share the faith with others. Holy Family Parish is only one of 61 parishes across the country to have been selected! In exchange for being part of the first group of parishes, Dynamic Catholic will provide over a million dollars of world-class resources in books, programs, parish best practices, and regular coaching for the parish leadership team for the next five years – all at no cost to our parish.


Dynamic Parish

10-27-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

For the last several years, Holy Family Parish has passed out books and promoted resources from Dynamic Catholic. The Dynamic Catholic Institute was founded in 2008 by Matthew Kelly with the mission of re-energizing the Catholic Church in America through developing world-class resources that inspire people to rediscover the genius of Catholicism. It seeks to help parishes become truly dynamic through the adoption of best practices and the distribution of these excellent resources. Matthew has dedicated his life to helping people and organizations become "the-best-version-of-themselves." Born in Sydney, Australia, he began speaking and writing in his late teens while attending business school. In fact, very early in his career, Matthew came here to Holy Family and spoke on two occasions. Since then, four million people have attended his seminars and presentations in more than fifty countries. Today, Matthew is an internationally acclaimed speaker, author, and business consultant. His books have been published in more than twenty-five languages, have appeared on the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestseller lists, and have sold more than twenty million copies. He oversees 3 organizations: Dynamic Catholic; Floyd Consulting, a Chicago based management consulting firm; and Wellspring Books, which publishes books that inspire individuals to become the best version of themselves.


St. John Henry Newman / Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

10-20-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

This past week, the Church marked two important occasions among the many activities and feasts going on within the Church around the world. The first took place last Sunday, October 13 when Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman was canonized a saint. St. John Henry Newman was one of the most beloved and well-known preachers of his time. Originally, an Anglican priest, Newman converted to Catholicism and became a Catholic priest and cardinal. Known for his beautiful prose and captivating preaching, Newman has long been a source of inspiration to many both inside and outside the Catholic Church. Newman's masterful knowledge of the lives of the saints, Catholic doctrine, and, above all, Sacred Scripture, has helped many Catholics deepen their faith, and appreciation of the bible and the liturgical seasons. His writings are numerous and varied; and, since he wrote in English, they are very accessible. An interesting bit of trivia about Cardinal Newman is that the miracle attributed to his intercession, which led to his beatification (step just before canonization), was the healing of a local Permanent Deacon, Deacon Jack Sullivan, who lives in Hanson. You can learn more about this miracle by visiting


How's your faith?

10-13-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

How's your faith? Strong, weak, or in-between? For many of us, it can waver. Bishop Robert Baron recently provided an interesting reflection on Luke's account of Jesus' amazement at the Roman centurion's faith. "I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith." (Luke 7: 1–10) Bishop Baron writes, "Faith is an attitude of trust in the presence of God. Faith is an openness to what God will reveal, do, and invite. It should be obvious that, in dealing with the infinite, all -powerful person who is God, we are never in control. One of the most fundamental statements of faith is this: your life is not about you. You're not in control. This is not your project. Rather, you are part of God's great design. To believe this in your bones and act accordingly is to have faith. When we operate out of this transformed vision, amazing things happen, for we have surrendered to 'a power already at work in us that can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine.' (Ephesians 3:20) Even a tiny bit of faith makes an extraordinary difference." (Word on Fire - Daily Gospel Reflection 9/16/19)


Dynamic Parish

10-06-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

As you may know, our parish has recently entered Phase 7 of the Archdiocese of Boston Pastoral Planning Process called Disciples in Mission. A number of parishes have been chosen in stages to enter the process over the last 6 years, and it is now our turn to begin planning in a particular way for the mission of evangelization, the work of reaching out to our brothers and sisters, and drawing them more fully to Jesus Christ and to His Church. With the help of our parish Evangelization Commission, Holy Family has been already undertaking several evangelization initiatives, including offering periodic witness talks at Mass, having a Welcome Weekend for people who do not ordinarily attend Mass here regularly, Ash Wednesday – Day of Open Doors, among other efforts. As we formally begin our participation in Disciples in Mission, we will position ourselves more solidly for the task of evangelization, always keeping in mind the mission given by Jesus to the Church: "Go and make disciples." (Mt. 28:19) Each element of the planning process is aimed at enabling parish communities to fulfill this Gospel mission.


The Daily Decalogue of Pope John XXIII

09-29-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

Here is some inspiration for growth in wisdom and holiness from Pope St. John XXIII. It's called "The Daily Decalogue of Pope John XXIII." Happiness has a lot to do with our outlook and determination to live one day at a time. Following these steps will make a big difference. Pray for the grace to truly carry them out and see what happens!

The Daily Decalogue of Pope John XXIII

  1. Only for today, I will seek to live the livelong day positively without wishing to solve the problems of my life all at once.
  2. Only for today, I will take the greatest care of my appearance: I will dress modestly; I will not raise my voice; I will be courteous in my behavior; I will not criticize anyone; I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.

Foster – Transform – Empower

09-22-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

You may have noticed recently some staff members and parishioners wearing white Holy Family T-shirts with our new parish logo and wondered what the words on the back of the shirt mean. The words imprinted there are: Foster – Transform – Empower. It comes from our Holy Family Parish Vision Statement developed by our pastoral staff and endorsed by our Parish Pastoral Council. It can be found at the bottom of the Welcome Message page on the I'm New dropdown tab of our parish website.

Here it is and what it means:


Stop Taxpayer Funding of Abortion in Massachusetts

09-15-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

A parishioner recently shared a disheartening story with me regarding an encounter her daughter had with a pro-abortion proponent. It highlights what young people can face these days on college campuses from some strident activists. While this parishioner's married daughter was working on a pro-life display, she left her one-year old son with her single sister. As she was holding the baby boy in her arms on the campus eating her lunch, a woman came up to her and handed her a card advertising an abortion clinic with her telephone number on it. She told the young woman to contact her the next time she gets pregnant so that "this (the child) does not happen again." Saint Mother Teresa addressed such callousness when she said, "The so-called right to abortion has portrayed the greatest gifts – a child – as a competitor, an intrusion and an inconvenience." And this attitude is being fostered by a "throw-away" culture.


Prayerfully Assess your Financial Committment

09-08-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

Our parish, like all families, sometimes struggle to make ends meet. This happens to be the case for our parish family. With a significant decrease in church attendance over the last several months, we've also experienced a decrease in the offertory collection income we depend on each week to meet our regular expenses. Certainly, many factors contribute to the drop in church attendance, not the least of which is a decline in the level of importance people attribute to the practice of their faith. Churches across all denominations are experiencing this same phenomenon. It can be a source of sadness for us all as we see fewer of our family members, friends and neighbors worshiping with us here at Holy Family. We miss them!


Avoid the Sunday Slump

09-01-2019Pastor's CornerRev. Robert J. Deehan, V.F.

Attending Mass is the most important thing Catholics do each week, but even the most committed can fall into a Sunday slump. So, consider these ideas to make the Lord's Day truly special.

Attend Mass somewhere new. Occasionally being in a different environment can help us look at Mass with fresh eyes and give us new perspective. We can be reminded that the Catholic faith is universal. There are people in small towns and big cities all over the world who come together at Mass to praise God.

Get away. Plan a day trip around attending Mass. There are churches that have mosaics, relics and amazing art. Find the closest basilica or cathedral, or a Catholic church with a history. Attend Mass there and then find other activities in the town to do.