2024 Lumen Christi Gala

On Tuesday, June 18, the Diocese came together for the third annual Lumen Christi Gala at White’s in Westport. I began my comments that evening by expressing how truly grateful I am for all those who were able to join us and support the much-needed repairs and ongoing upkeep of Saint Mary’s Cathedral. It was truly a wonderful event; it is always a delight for me to see so many familiar faces—so many friends of our Diocese. It gives me encouragement and great hope for the future. 

In addition to bringing awareness to the dire need of our Mother church and to celebrate our Diocese’s 120th anniversary, we also honored the generous philanthropy of Patrick and Lillian Carney. I have long been impressed with how the Carneys place faith at the center of their lives and their work and how many lives they have touched by their volunteer spirit. I spoke on behalf of the Diocese, as well as myself, as I expressed how grateful we truly are for Pat and Lil Carney. They are deserving recipients of this year’s Luminary Award.

Gallery of images available on Catholic Foundation website.

I’d like to, once again, express my gratitude to all those who attended and to the co-chairs of the Lumen Christi Cathedral Gala—Bob and Chris Long of Long Built Homes—and the Catholic Foundation board. 

We’ve already begun to see the fruits of the last two years of our fundraising efforts as work on restoring the magnificent stained-glass windows has begun. The most damaged lancet window on the church’s east side has been restored and reinstalled with a new frame and protective sheeting. Next up is work on the clerestory windows to prevent additional water infiltration and restoration of parts of the bell tower. The scaffolding is already up to begin the work.

2024 Catholic Appeal Coming to a Close

The 2024 Catholic Appeal, “Renew the Face of the Earth,” will close on June 30. For the last 82 years, the Appeal has helped people in all phases of life—from children to youth to parents to the elderly. Your generous support sustains the numerous agencies, programs, and ministries that provide food and shelter, educate children and adults, and meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of thousands. 

I am keenly aware that many of you are struggling in this economy. Please know that any amount you can offer helps the Diocese and its many agencies continue the important work. We know from the story of the widow’s mite that the Lord is pleased when we think of others before ourselves, always trusting in His providence when we do. 

You can make a one-time gift or a pledge with convenient payments throughout the year. You can give by mail, use a contribution card located in your church, or make your gift or pledge securely online by clicking the “Make a Donation” button below.

2024 Diocesan Service Awards

Two weeks ago, for the first time the Diocese of Fall River recognized in a formal way employees of our offices and ministries who have worked for at least five years. All our employees help carry out the mission that is ours as a diocesan church, and I am pleased that we will now have this opportunity to say thank you to our employees for their contributions.

We began with Mass in St. John Neumann Church in East Freetown, and St. Mark’s Gospel for the day concluded with Jesus telling his disciples, “Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all. For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mk 10:43-45). In my homily, I reflected on Jesus’ message conveyed not only in His words and deeds but also especially in His dying on the cross: life is not about honor or privilege but service. I shared that as a Church, we are here to serve—lovingly, joyfully, and with grace.

Janice Furtado of our Human Resources was among those recognized at the Service Awards. In different capacities, Janice has served the Diocese for 50 years.

After Mass, we gathered in the parish hall for a luncheon and the presentation of awards recognizing employees for their years of service by five-year anniversaries. In all, 27 employees were honored, from five years going up to 50! I expressed to them my sincere appreciation for their work and their generosity of time and talent. As I reminded them, every employee- regardless of the particulars of their job- helps to support the work of our Diocese to make disciples and to bring people to Jesus.

Yours in Christ,
Bishop da Cunha

The Most Reverend Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., D.D.
The Most Reverend Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., D.D.
The Bishop of Fall River