Archive for the ‘Thomas Price’ Tag

Feast of James A. Walsh, Thomas Price, and Mary Josephine Rogers (October 27)   Leave a comment

Above:  Maryknoll Logo

Image in the Public Domain

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THOMAS FREDERICK PRICE (AUGUST 19, 1860-SEPTEMBER 12, 1919)

Cofounder of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers

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JAMES ANTHONY WALSH (FEBRUARY 24, 1867-APRIL 14, 1936)

Cofounder of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers

Cofounder of the Maryknoll Sisters of Saint Dominic

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MARY JOSEPHINE ROGERS (OCTOBER 27, 1882-OCTOBER 9, 1955)

Foundress of the Maryknoll Sisters of Saint Dominic

Also known as Mother Mary Joseph Rogers

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One of my goals in renovating this, my Ecumenical Calendar of Saints’ Days and Holy Days is to emphasize relationships and influences.  The biographies of these three saints, with their overlapping lives, are ideal for telling together.

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BEGINNINGS

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Thomas Frederick Price was a man devoted to missionary work.  He, born in Wilmington, North Carolina, on August 14, 1860, grew up in a Roman Catholic family.  The prices experienced much hostility from many of their Protestant neighbors.  Our saint, who discerned his priestly vocation at an early age, studied at St. Charles Seminary, Catonsville, Maryland, from 1877 to 1881.  Then, from 1881 to 1886, he studied at St. Mary’s Seminary, Baltimore, Maryland.  On June 20, 1886, the date of Price’s priestly ordination in Wilmington, North Carolina, he became the first Roman Catholic priest native to that state.  He, at first a priest in the Asheville-Bern area, eventually undertook, with his bishop’s approval, a program of statewide evangelism.  Price began to publish and edit a magazine, The Truth, in 1897.  He also opened the Nazareth Orphanage in 1898.  Four years later Price opened the missionary training house at Nazareth.  From 1902 to 1909 he served as the spiritual director of the Regina Apostolorum.

James Anthony Walsh, named in G. Scott Cady and Christopher L. Webber, A Year with American Saints (2006), also devoted his life to missionary work.  He, born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on February 24, 1867, attended public schools then Boston College, Harvard College, and St. John’s Seminary in Brighton, Massachusetts.  He, ordained to the priesthood in Boston on May 20, 1892, served first as the curate of St. Patrick’s Church, Roxbury.  Starting in 1903, he was the diocesan Director of the Society of the Propagation of the Faith, with offices in Boston.  In 1907 Walsh founded a missionary magazine, The Field AfarMary Josephine “Mollie” Rogers worked for the magazine.

Rogers, also named in A Year with American Saints (2006), devoted most of her life to foreign missions.  She, born to an Irish Catholic family in Boston, Massachusetts, on October 27, 1882, attended public schools; the family was attempting to fit in with Boston society.  In 1901 she matriculated at Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts, where Roman Catholics were marginal.  At Smith College, as an undergraduate student, she became involved in the Student Volunteer Movement, with its focus on foreign missions.  Later, as a graduate student teaching zoology.  Rogers helped to start the Newman Club, founded as a Catholic missions club.  This effort brought her into contact with Father James A. Walsh, whom she met in his Boston office in December 1906.  Within two years she had abandoned her graduate program, gone to work in the offices of The Field Afar, and begun teaching in a local school.

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PRICE AND WALSH

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Price and Walsh had been working on the same proposal independently.  They had been writing about the need for a seminary to prepare American men to become foreign missionary priests.  Their meeting at the Eucharistic Congress, Montreal, Canada, in 1910 led to collaboration.  The following year they traveled to Rome, to ask Pope Pius X to approve their new order, the Catholic Foreign Mission Society of America, a.k.a. the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers.  The Holy Father did approve, on June 29, 1911.  The site of the new seminary became Ossining, New York.  The first group of missionary priests, headed for China, was ready in 1918.  James E. Walsh (1891-1981) was one of those priests.  Price, fulfilling a dream to become a missionary, went to China as a missionary.  He, 59 years old, died of a burst appendix in Hong Kong on September 12, 1919.

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WALSH AND ROGERS

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Father James A. Walsh, the Maryknoll Superior General from 1911 to 1936, helped Rogers and other women become fully involved in foreign missions.  The women were auxiliary to the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, but were more effective in the Foreign Missions Sisters of Saint Dominic (now the Maryknoll Sisters of Saint Dominic), which Mollie Rogers and James A. Walsh founded on February 14, 1920.  Rogers led the order until her death, in 1955.  She founded the Maryknoll Contemplative Community in 1932.

James A. Walsh ended his days as Bishop Walsh.  On June 29, 1933, in Rome, he became the Titular Bishop of Siene.  He, aged 69 years, died on April 14, 1936.

Rogers, aware of the Presence of God, encouraged the sisters to cultivate that sense in their lives.  The goal, in her mind, was for the sisters to see each other as God saw them.  She understood the importance of justice in relationships.  The basis of such justice, she insisted, was loving, fearless honesty.

Rogers, aged 72 years, died on October 9, 1955.

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The Maryknoll Fathers, Brothers, and Sisters have taken the Gospel of Christ to the ends of the earth.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

DECEMBER 17, 2018 COMMON ERA

THE SIXTEENTH DAY OF ADVENT, YEAR C

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM LLOYD GARRISON, ABOLITIONIST AND FEMINIST; AND MARIA STEWART, ABOLITIONIST, FEMINIST, AND EDUCATOR

THE FEAST OF EGLANTYNE JEBB AND DOROTHY BUXTON, FOUNDERS OF SAVE THE CHILDREN

THE FEAST OF FRANK MASON NORTH, U.S. METHODIST MINISTER

THE FEAST OF MARY CORNELIA BISHOP GATES, U.S. DUTCH REFORMED HYMN WRITER

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Everlasting God, you have sent your messengers to carry the good news of Christ into the world;

grant that we who commemorate James A. Walsh, Thomas Price, and Mary Josephine “Mollie” Rogers

may know the hope of the gospel in the our hearts and show forth its light in all our ways;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Isaiah 49:1-6

Psalm 67 or 96

Acts 16:6-10

Matthew 9:25-38

–Adapted from A New Zealand Prayer Book (1989), 682-683

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