June 2008
Volume 120 Issue 6

The Newsletter from Holy Trinity, "the German Church", published since 1899.





Dear Monatsbote Readers,

It is with great sadness and regret that we must inform our readers that His Eminence, Seán Cardinal O’Malley has set June 30, 2008 as the date for the closure of Holy Trinity.  Although four years have passed since this intention was first announced, we still do not know why our church was specifically identified for elimination.  While it seems to us that successful parishes with unique missions should be among the last to be sacrificed to help the Archdiocese adjust to administration challenges and demographic changes, others apparently do not see it that way.  We have repeatedly been asked to accept on faith that the Archdiocese will be better off without us.  Those requests not withstanding, it is expected that some parishioners will exercise their canonical right to appeal this order to the appropriate parties and at the appropriate time.

For everyone’s information you will find in this issue the text of the Archbishop’s “letter of intent.”   You will also find a copy of the letter sent by members of the Parish Council to Bishop Hennessey in which they raised concerns with many parts of the letter he read to the Presbyteral Council in March when he asked them to consider the Holy Trinity case.  (The Bishop’s letter appeared in the May issue of Monatsbote.)  Although there was no reply or acknowledgement from Bishop Hennessey, the authors are convinced that their objections are both pertinent and valid to the closure decision.

Many questions have been raised about the disposition of the parish’s property and resources.  Unfortunately, we currently do not know the answers.  It is expected that over the next few weeks, we will learn what needs to happen both during and after the appeal process takes its course.  We are hopeful that the matter will be clearer by the time that our next (and possibly final) issue goes to press.

                                                Peter V. Cooper, Editor


Special Items

Renewal of Marriage Vows

Throughout its long history, Holy Trinity Church has witnessed the wedding ceremonies of countless loving couples.  Others among our parishioners exchanged their vows in other holy places.  Whether you may be in the first or the second group, the parish will hold “Renewal of Marriage Vows” ceremonies on Sunday, June 15, 2008.  Married couples wishing to participate are asked to call Dolores Miller (617-282-5763) to let her know whether they will be attending the Tridentine Latin or the Novus Ordo English Mass on the 15th.  Responses no later than June 12 would be appreciated so that we can do the proper planning.

Good Will Fund

Given the imminent closure of the parish, we are no longer soliciting donations to the Good Will fund. Therefore you will not find the usual envelope in this mailing.  Please be assured that the parish very much appreciates the support of thousands of donors over the many decades that the Good Will Fund has existed.  It has served as a meaningful and tangible way for parishioners who could not participate in person on a weekly basis to maintain their connection with their parish.  Thank you for your remarkable generosity and steadfast loyalty.


The parish wishes to express its sincere appreciation to several parishioners – including, in particular, Barbara and Dennis Sullivan – for special donations made in recent months to help defray some extraordinary parish expenses.  These and all Holy Trinity benefactors remain in our prayers.

Indult Appeal Status

The May 2007 Monatsbote contained reports on formal appeals that were made to Cardinal O’Malley and to the Congregation of the Clergy in Rome concerning the Cardinal’s decision to transfer our Latin parishioners to another parish.  In a decree dated August 27, 2007 His Eminence, Claudio Cardinal Hummes, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, rejected the appeal on the technical grounds that the petitioners had not complied with the requirements of Canon Law 1734.  The merits of the case were not addressed.  His Eminence did not specify in what way the appeal was found not to conform nor did he appear to take into account the fact that Canon 1734 includes language which specifies that it does not apply to certain types of appeals.  The most recent communication with Rome was sent on November 14, 2007.  The Parish Council has not yet received a reply to that letter.


Effective July 1, 2008 Rev. John J. Connolly will relinquish his role as Rector of the Cathedral of the Holy Cross to Reverend Kevin J. O’Leary.  Fr. Connolly will continue to serve as Special Assistant to the Archbishop and as Administrator of Holy Trinity if that position still has any meaning past June 30, 2008.

Parish Finance Committee

Over the past several months the Parish Finance Committee, working with the parish office, has been attempting both to oversee current revenues and expenses and to determine their patterns over the last decade or so.  As is generally known, there were no financial reports during the time of either of our immediate past two Administrators nor was parish staff much involved in financial activity.  While some progress has been made organizing and examining the records we have been able to obtain, there are still many gaps.  It is clear, however, that up until the past few years, the parish’s income substantially exceeded its expenses.   In recent years, unfortunately, the impending closure, the Chancery’s finding of financial mismanagement and the loss of parishioners due to the Indult transfer have combined to have a significant impact on parish revenue.  Recent history (back to July 2006) is now pretty clear.  Therefore, the Finance Committee released an interim report as part of the Sunday bulletin on May 25, 2008.  Due to space limitations, we present here the following extract from that report.

For the first nine months of the current Fiscal Year (July ’07 – June ’08) the parish income totaled $42,022.72 and expenses totaled $85,648.32.  That operating deficit of more than $43,000 was filled by drawing down on accumulated savings.  Since last July, the major sources of income have been: Rents, Offertory, Good Will, and Bank Interest.  The major expenses have been: Utilities, Music, Clergy, and Facilities upkeep.  As of April 30, 2008, the parish’s bank accounts totaled $241,593 which was down $93,742 from the $335,335 we had on July 1, 2006.  It is hoped that more information will be available for inclusion in the nest issue of Monatsbote.


Archbishop’s Letter of Intent



Letter to Bishop Hennessey concerning his letter read to the Presbyteral Council on March 14, 2008






As of this writing, the Parish Council has received neither reply nor acknowledgement from Bishop Hennessey regarding this letter. 


June 2008 Calendar


June       1

9 AM Low Mass in Latin.  The Mass will be offered for Angelina and Gaetano Camelo. 

11 AM Mass in English/German.  Frauenbruderschaft.  The Mass will be offered for Frank and Louise Freier. 

Wed        4

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 7:00 PM.

Sat        10

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 12:30 PM.

June    8

9 AM Low Mass in Latin.  The Mass will be offered for Alfons Cardinal Stickler.

Holy Name Society will recite the Holy Name Litany after Mass.

11 AM Mass in English/German.  Männerbruderschaft.  The Mass will be offered for all the deceased members of the Ufheil and Hatje families.

Wed   11

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 7:00 PM.

Sat     14

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 12:30 PM.

Holy Trinity German Choir rehearsal, 1:30 PM.

June  15

9 AM Low Mass in Latin.  The Mass will be offered for Louis Gentile.  Wedding Vow Renewal Ceremony immediately after Mass.

11 AM Mass in English/German.  Holy Trinity German Choir.  The Mass will be offered for Sidney Earl Gilbert, Jr., and for all the deceased fathers of Holy Trinity Parish.  Wedding Vow Renewal Ceremony during Mass.  

Wed   18

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 7:00 PM.

Sat     21

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 12:30 PM.

June  22

9 AM Low Mass in Latin.  The Mass will be offered for Christopher Perry.

11 AM Mass in English/German.  Immaculate Conception Sodality.  The Mass will be offered for John T. Donovan.

Wed   25

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 7:00 PM.

Fri     27 7 PM-9 PM Holy Hour followed by Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament.

Sat     28

Holy Trinity Combined Choirs rehearsal, 12:30 PM.

June  29

9 AM High Mass in Latin.  Holy Trinity Combined  Choirs.  The Mass will be offered for Antoinette and Andrew Adevai and for Luke Scialla.

11 AM Concelebrated Mass in English/German.  Holy Trinity Combined  Choirs.  The Mass will be offered for Aloysius Geiger.  Mass will be followed by Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament and a reception in the lower church hall.



Etwas Neues & Quid Novi

Ø       Ad multos annos!  From Holy Trinity (German) Church to the newly ordained priests of our archdiocesan seminaries who, on May 24th, were joined by joy-filled confreres who witnessed and remembered their own reception of the Sacrament of Holy Orders.

Ø       Also, Golden Jubilee wishes to a past Administrator, Msgr. Frederick J. Murphy.  We recall his enthusiasm for our Sesquicentennial – guiding the publication of our history book: “A Way of Life” and participating in our “Heimatland Tour”.  Now he is gifting St. Mary of the Annunciation Parish (126 Conant St., Danvers 01923) with his priestly presence.

Ø       Special vocation prayers for Brother Giles of the Little Brothers of St. Francis who makes his perpetual profession.  His order, whose habit is a simple cowled blue denim, may be seen locally in service to the hungry, homeless and needy – treading where even angels might be fearing.  A card or note (perhaps enclosing a bit o’ green) may be sent to: 785-789 Parker St., Boston 02120-3021.

Ø       In keeping with this vocational theme, we print the following: “Thou Art a Priest Forever: To live in the midst of the world, without wishing its pleasures; To be a member of each family, yet belonging to none; To share all suffering: To penetrate all secrets: To heal all wounds; To go from people to God and offer Him their prayers; To return from God to people to bring pardon and hope; To have a heart of fire for charity and a heart of bronze for chastity; To teach and to pardon, console and bless always.”   (Fr. Jean Baptiste Henri Lacordaire – Maryknoll)

Ø      Heilige Dreifaltigkeit Kirche is most pleased to say Willkommen to Friedrich Ludwig Löhr, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Boston.  May his years in this responsible position be interesting and fruitful.  We join all our German Brüder und Schwestern in Ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit!

Ø       From a justly proud “Nana”, Joan Riordan, our ever-faithful Minister of Communion, we learned of the graduation of her granddaughter, Katie Riordan, from Worcester State College.  A psychology major, Katie had health-field work experience during her college years and is fulfilling her goal at “Building Blocks” where she cares for autistic children under 3 years of age.  Heartfelt felicitations, dear Katie, as you embark on this most necessary and challenging career.

Ø       Trinity Sunday’s concelebrated Mass with beautiful choral and organ music, its devout congregational May procession and its luncheon delightfully prepared and served by “you know who” was enhanced by the presence of James and Barbara (Schleicher) Sullivan.  They celebrated their 55th Anniversary in Seattle where Jim was Confirmation sponsor for Mark’s son, Jacob.  What a great honor for both grandfather and grandson.  Congratulations to all generations!

Ø       Also attending our titular feast were Carmen and Ray Hunt of Haverhill.  They look forward to their 40th wedding anniversary on June 15.  We send our very best wishes to this dear couple who truly exemplify the word “pilgrimage” each time they drive to Holy Trinity for Mass.  May your four-decades garden burst forth with ruby radishes, rhubarb ‘n’ roses enroute to your “Golden Year”!

Ø       One hundred eleven years after its founding in 1897, Holy Trinity’s’ Teutonia Council #225 Knights of Columbus is disbanding.  To all Knights and their Ladies we say Dankeschön for their many years of spiritual and financial service to Holy Trinity.  May God continue to bless their work!

Ø       Farewell to our long-time friends, the clients, staff and officers of the Kit Clark and Bridge programs as they comply with orders to leave.  Like the areas they occupied, our hearts will be empty and sad.  Our prayerful thoughts go with them for continued success in their endeavors.

Ø       Regina Cleri has a new resident in the person of our weekly Sunday Mass celebrant, Rev. James F. Curtin.  Father has looked forward to moving into his “junior suite” and living among his fellow priests both friends and classmates.  We wish him happiness and we hope he’ll not forget his grateful friends among the soon-to-be scattered Holy Trinity flock.  Regina Cleri Residence; 60 Wm. Card. O’Connell Way, Boston, MA  02114-2729.

Ø       What is so rare (fair) as a (Birth)day in June?  Frohe Geburtstag to (3) Julia Brinkhaus; (6) Leo Higgins, (15) Tara Crowley and Michael Connolly; (26) Charles Brusard and Terri Kaufman.  A toast to the annual celebration of your debut on Planet Earth.  [PS: Julia Brinkhaus observed her 75th with a “surprise” dinner among her and Heinz’s several generations.  This lovely matriarch shares talents with Sängerchor-Boston, the GALS and GLAS as well as being a doting Großmutter.]

Ø       Dankeschön vielmal to Bob Hock who shared with his “big sister”, Dolores Miller a coincidental article from THE TABLET (the Brooklyn, NY diocesan paper) by Dr. Patrick J. McNamara, assistant diocesan archivist.  Entitled: Diocese Has a Proud German Legacy, we excerpt: “In 1841, Father Johann Raffeiner founded Most Holy Trinity Parish for that area’s growing German population …”.  We now turn to page 10 of our history book which tells of the same Father Raffeiner’s trips to Boston and who, in 1844, founded our Holy Trinity Parish.  This brilliant, devoted priest/physician has our everlasting gratitude and now, our appeal for heavenly help.

Ø       In 2008, the Missionary Society of St. James tallies 50 years of service.  From its May newsletter FRIENDS, we learn how Holy Trinity became involved in a roundabout way.  The late Father John Sullivan was brought back from Bolivia to become Cardinal Cushing’s Spanish-speaking secretary and was also responsible for sending supplies to the priests in mission areas.  His office consisted of two rooms in the then closed school of Holy Trinity Parish.  He admits to having made “horrible goofs” when he acceded to Cardinal Cushing’s suggestion of sending down disused steel-framed wooden desks.  He remembered “a lot of time was spent trying to pack these unpackable desks and I should have said ‘No’.”  As a postcard once stated, “In every American pie there’s a slice of German life.”  To paraphrase the motto of the battle of Lexington: “We’re the church that’s known ‘round the world!”

Ø       June – the month of the Sacred Heart – has multiple feasts honoring both famous and lesser known saints.  Among the former are: 13) St. Anthony of Padua; 24) St. John the Baptist; 29) Sts. Peter and Paul (2008 has been designated as the year of St. Paul).  Also, there are two particular dates deserving honor, namely, the 14th – Flag Day (when we show our patriotism by proudly displaying the colors of our country) and the 15th – Father’s Day (when we show our gratitude by attending Mass and praying for both living and deceased –paternal and religious.)  Enjoy!

Ø       June 29, 2008 – our “D-Day”.  Will it stand for doomsday or dignity?  Will the purported sword of Damocles make its descent?  As you know, our beloved Holy Trinity is at the brink of suppression (a.k.a. extinction and confiscation) unless our German Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI and his Roman Curia intercede on its behalf.  Thus we exhort all who ever were part of Holy Trinity’s spiritual, scholastic or social events to return to your roots and attend Mass that day.  Let us share the memories, pride and achievements of its wise, caring and sacrificing builders and sustainers throughout her selfless 164 years of service to all who entered her doors.  Heilige Dreifaltigkeit must not go down that unknown road alone!



Lectors for English/German Masses


June      1

Joseph Harzbecker

June      8

Dolores Miller

June    15

Barbara Bridge

June    22

Roland Horst

June    29

Michael Hager


Monatsbote Editor
Holy Trinity Church
140 Shawmut Avenue
Boston, MA 02118