BOSTON, Mass. — St. Anthony Shrine in Boston was a busy place in June, ministering to the community in a variety of ways. The shrine hosted a street fair, a discussion of the best-selling book, The Secret, and a free mobile mammogram program for underserved women.
On June 13, it held its Fourth Semi-Annual Street Fair to commemorate the Feast of Saint Anthony, for whom the shrine is named. The shrine finds the fair to be a great way to share its ministries with the community, which include the Kids’ Program, the Seniors’ Program, the Lazarus Program, Evangelization, the Mychal Judge Recovery Center, and the always popular St. Anthony Shrine Music Ministry Group.
The shrine, which reports the largest crowd ever, received more than 2,500 loaves of St. Anthony Bread, several hundred St. Anthony lilies, and more than 2,000 hot dogs and beverages provided by Sebastian’s Restaurant.
In addition to all the fun, the shrine offered its usual schedule of daily Masses.
The next day, on June 14, more than 100 community members and friars turned out for a discussion led by David Convertino on the best-selling book, “The Secret” by Rhonda Byrne.
Dr. Jackie Stewart, director of Evangelization and the Franciscan Adult School, introduced the program by noting that Catholicism has always focused on both faith and reason, and that discussions such as these are essential to spiritual growth. David, shown in photo with street fair attendee Pedro Pierce, pointed out that one danger in reading this book is that people may believe that anything negative in their lives, such as illness or crime, is a result of not practicing “The Secret” correctly. “According to St. Francis,” David said, “real spirituality is seen in how one endures hardships, not in how one avoids them.”
On June 26, the shrine offered free mammograms to women in conjunction with the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. The institute parked its mobile mammography van outside the shrine’s Wellness Center and provided mammograms to more than 25 underserved women.
All women, regardless of ability to pay, were welcomed. “The highlight of the program for me,” said Mickey Logemann, assistant director of the Wellness Center, “is our ability to reach those who had no insurance, particularly those who are new to this country.”