Bishop da Cunha Building Faith Blog Fall River Diocese

25th Annual FACE Summer Gala

Last Thursday (August 4th), the Foundation to Advance Catholic Education (FACE) hosted the 25th Annual FACE Summer Gala at the Wianno Club in Osterville. As always, I was happy to participate in this wonderful celebration of Catholic education in the Diocese of Fall River. 

Almost 200 guests came together for a fun evening together to support FACE student scholarships. We are grateful to our Co-Chairs, Dick, and Marilyn Colman (pictured above), for their leadership and commitment, and to the entire Summer Gala Committee for all their work to make it such a success. 

This year, I presented the Al Makkay Sr. Friend of Catholic Education Award to Ann-Marie Shaw, Office Administrator at St. Pius X School in South Yarmouth. Congratulations to Ann-Marie, who has been a dedicated and faithful part of the St. Pius X community for over 15 years. 
The evening offered a beautiful setting, delicious food, the sounds of a cappella group Hyannis Sound, fun raffles and live auction, and Fund a Mission scholarship donations. FACE provides through four separate funds financial support to Diocesan families seeking to provide a Catholic Education for their children. To learn more or make a donation, please visit the FACE website.

Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary every year on August 15, honoring the entry of Mary into heaven—body and soul. The Assumption falls into the category of “solemnity,” which means not only is it among the highest rank feast days celebrating a mystery of faith, but also a Holy Day of Obligation.  
The belief that Mary’s body (as well as her soul) was “assumed” into heaven was defined as a dogma (core belief of the faith) by Pope Pius XII on November 1, 1950, in the Apostolic Constitution Munificentissimus Deus, but belief in the Assumption of Mary dates to the earliest centuries of the Church. Pope Pius XII did not establish a new doctrine but merely confirmed the universal belief of early Christianity, declaring it to be revealed by God through the means of Apostolic tradition. 
When a solemnity or holy day falls on a Monday (or a Saturday), as is the case for the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in 2022, the obligation to attend Mass is dispensed or abrogated (temporarily waived for that year). However, I pray you and your family will still consider attending Mass on Monday, August 15th, to mark this beautiful Marian feast day.

Journeying Together in Faith and Love

The 81st Catholic Appeal, “Journeying Together in Faith and Love,”  closed with the annual campaign raising $4.3 million to support the work of the Church across the Diocese of Fall River. I am grateful to everyone who helped continue the rich tradition of service we have in our Diocese through their support of the Catholic Appeal.
In the midst of an extremely challenging economic environment, donor support remained strong, as more than 16,000 individual donors made gifts and pledges to sustain the Appeal’s longstanding mission of serving those in greatest need. Each donor has embodied the words of Pope Francis, who said, ‘Participation is a requirement of the faith we received in baptism.’ I am blessed to serve so many thousands who embrace the call to share with those in need the blessings they have received.
The successful conclusion to our Appeal this year reflects how well the faithful of our Diocese responded to its theme of walking down a common road together and how they connected the tenets of Pope Francis’ worldwide synod to the good works made possible through collective support for the annual Appeal. Details on the results of this year’s Catholic Appeal can be found on the Diocesan website here.
As you know, the agencies, ministries, and programs throughout the Diocese of Fall River benefitted by the Catholic Appeal continue to require support throughout the year. While the Appeal is ended, donations can be made online at any time at or mailed to the Catholic Appeal office at 450 Highland Ave., Fall River, MA 02720. They may also continue to be dropped off at any parish in the Diocese.
Yours in Christ,
Bishop da Cunha

O Reverendíssimo Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., D.D.
O Reverendíssimo Edgar M. da Cunha, S.D.V., D.D.
The Bishop of Fall River