Due to the severity of the Coronavirus-COVID-19 Masses and Programs at St. Katharine Drexel Parish have been cancelled. Follow Mass at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHECXQ64mGvvBufTwxSUugA
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  Thursday, May 14, 2020


COVID-19 Command Center  

Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency 
Situation Update Command Center Situation Reports will be issued Monday-Friday.
State Actions in Today’s Report: 


Daily Case Update (link in sidebar) 

Testing Capacity and Strategy,


PPE Procurement  


$502 Million From Federal COVID-19 Relief Fund For Cities & Towns 


Update on Mobile Testing Numbers  


Update on Holyoke and Chelsea Soldiers’ Homes 


New Blood Donation Information 
Helpful Links:
Jobs Available to Assist Long Term Care Facilities 


Get Involved: Community Contact Tracing Collaborative 


Mass.Gov/covid19 Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency  

Unemployment & COVID-19 

Dept. Of Transitional Assistance Online Portal 

FrontlineMA.org 

Emergency Childcare Site 

MBTA.com/covid19 

COVID-19 Cost Eligibility and Tracking Guidance 

Complete List of Emergency Orders & Guidance 

Background on the Command Center The COVID Command Center, under the leadership of Secretary Marylou Sudders and reporting to Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, is the Commonwealth’s single point of strategic decision making and coordination for the Administration’s comprehensive COVID-19 response.


Today, Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito joined Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders to provide an update on the COVID-19 response. (Read the news release)

The Governor provided his daily update on testing, hospitalizations, PPE distribution, and long-term testing in Massachusetts.  Lt. Governor Polito reiterated the state’s message to survivors of domestic violence. 
Daily Update on Testing, Hospitalizations, and PPE Distribution
Testing:   Yesterday (May 13th) approximately 8,500 new tests were reported in Massachusetts. Over 410,000 total tests have been completed to date.  o 14% of yesterday’s tests were positive. Positive test rates have been around 10% for the past week.
Hospitalizations and Capacity:  

As of May 13th, the number of hospitalizations continues to trend downward.  Approximately 3,000 individuals are reported hospitalized.  
Personal Protective Equipment:  

To date, the Commonwealth has delivered over 10.5 million pieces of PPE; this includes masks, gloves, gowns, and ventilators distributed to health care workers, first responders and others.  

The Command Center continues to aggressively pursue all supply chain avenues.
COVID-19 Testing Capacity and Strategy, PPE Procurement The Baker-Polito Administration announced expanded COVID-19 testing capacity and strategy, and provided an update on personal protective equipment (PPE) procurement.   

Testing Plan  As required to secure COVID-19 testing resources allocated in legislation passed by Congress on April 24, the Administration will submit its plan to expand testing to the federal government this month.   The plan builds on previously expanded testing criteria, and calls for the following: 

Boost overall testing capacity to 45,000 daily tests by the end of July, and 75,000 daily tests by the end of December, with the goal of decreasing positivity rate to less than 5 percent.  Lab processing capacity is also planned to expand, enabling preparedness for a potential testing surge in the fall. 

Testing expansion for residents and patients in high-risk congregate settings like state hospitals, group homes and correctional facilities will continue, and the Administration will ensure testing for individuals who are symptomatic, close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases or whose employment places them at a high risk. 

Randomized testing for surveillance purposes to build on the Community Tracing Collaborative’s contact tracing efforts. 

Improved turnaround time of testing to provide same-day or next-day results.  

When implementing the new testing proposed in this plan, communities with low testing availability, hotspots with high positive rates and high density areas will be the priorities.   Click here to view today’s testing presentation from the press conference.  

CVS Testing Sites The Baker-Polito Administration and CVS today announced the expansion of self-swab and send testing sites at nine select CVS Pharmacy drive-thru locations throughout the Commonwealth, which will enable on-the-spot COVID-19 testing at no cost, with results available in 2-3 days.  

CVS has served as an early partner in Massachusetts’ efforts to expand testing, and these new testing sites build upon the previously announced location in Lowell. These new sites are part of CVS’s first rollout of its national testing expansion program, with a goal of 1,000 testing sites across the country.  

The drive-thru CVS testing sites include locations in:

Charlton 

Worcester 

Raynham 

Northampton 

Bridgewater 

Carver 

West Springfield 

Danvers 

Individuals who meet testing criteria may register in advance at CVS.com beginning Friday, May 15 to schedule an appointment.   

PPE Procurement The Baker-Polito Administration continues to work to acquire personal protective equipment (PPE) to support frontline workers battling COVID-19. Today, the Administration highlighted the delivery of over 7.5 million additional pieces of PPE and supplies to be delivered to front-line workers throughout the Commonwealth.  

From April 20 through this past weekend, this equipment has been brought to Massachusetts through six different chartered flights. The PPE includes over 6 million surgical and procedural masks, about 800,000 swabs, nearly 400,000 coveralls and over 125,000 gowns. The Administration is grateful to the various partners who helped secure and deliver this PPE, including the Chinese Consul General in New York, Huang Ping, OCEANAIR and Delta Airlines. 
Administration to Distribute $502 Million from Federal COVID-19 Relief Fund to Cities & Towns
The Baker-Polito Administration today announced that it is preparing to distribute up to $502 million from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund to local cities and towns for eligible costs related to the COVID-19 response effort. The Administration is also providing guidance to local municipalities on this formal distribution process and establishing protocols to maximize the use of federal resources and promote compliance with federal restrictions.

This distribution, plus funds allocated directly to Boston and Plymouth County, represents approximately 25% of the state’s allocation from the Coronavirus Relief Fund, and in most cases, is expected to be sufficient to address incurred or expected eligible COVID-related expenses. This approach is intended to distribute money to municipalities quickly and efficiently, and maintain necessary flexibility to allocate additional funds if unanticipated needs arise, or if federal rules change. These resources will also help ease municipal cashflow pressures.   The Administration’s distribution process will allow municipalities to apply for estimated Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) needs. These funds will help address any existing deficits in FY20, thereby avoiding the need to use reserves to fund a deficit or carry one into Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21). Municipalities will then have the opportunity to request funding for FY21 eligible COVID-19 costs at a later date.   These funds must be utilized by municipalities consistent with parameters established by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES” Act) and guidance from the US Treasury Department.   Please click here for the full guidance for municipalities regarding the Baker-Polito Administration's approach to distributing Coronavirus Relief Funds and click here for a letter from Secretary of Administration and Finance Michael J. Heffernan to Municipal Chief Executives.
Deadline Approaching for Nursing Facility Testing Requirement
On April 27, the Administration announced a comprehensive nursing home accountability and support policy which includes up to $130 million in new funding to support long care facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. To access this support package, nursing facilities are required to conduct baseline testing of staff and residents. Testing must be completed by May 25 in order for facilities to be eligible for the enhanced funding. To date, only 10% of nursing facilities have met this requirement.
More information related to the required testing policy can be found here and an FAQ can be found here.  As a reminder, facilities have several options for testing which can be found in the FAQ.   Nursing facilities wishing to pursue testing through state-directed methods (COVID Command Center Congregate Care Mobile Testing Program call center), must:    Call the call center at 617-366-2350 to request testing no later than Monday, May 18th, at 4 PM  Confirm with the call center that your facility is ready with paperwork to be scheduled no later than Wednesday, May 20th, at 4 PM. The call center will work with you to ensure the requisition requirements are met   Nursing facilities that have not called to request testing by Monday, May 18th, at 4 PM, will not be able to make use of the COVID Command Center Congregate Care Mobile Testing Program and will have to use an alternate testing channel to meet requirements before May 25th. 
Update on Mobile Testing Numbers for Long Term Care, Assisted Living Residences and EOHHS Sites
Onsite Testing
Mobile Testing at EOHHS Group Homes & Care Sites (as of 5/14 by Fallon Ambulance Service)
Date  Number of Tests Completed
Facilities Visited
5/14 1,210 21 Total (as of 5/13) 42,077 684
COVID-19 Cases in Long-Term Care (LTC) Facilities (as of 5/13)

Residents/Healthcare Workers of LTC Facilities 17,477 LTC Facilities Reporting at Least One Case of COVID-19 340 Deaths Reported in LTC Facilities 3,338
DDS, DMH, DCF and DPH Facilities Clients 9,465 Staff 14,212

Total Tests  23,677 Number of Locations 1,490
 Other Important Updates
Holyoke Soldiers’ Home Update 
Today, volunteers from the American Red Cross Armed Forces Division are on site with a support services van to provide coffee, snacks, and masks for staff and domiciliary vets.   The Holyoke Soldiers’ Home has been intently focused on following infection control procedures and maintaining best practices for the safety of veteran residents and staff, and to support the recovery of veterans as the health status of many stabilizes. 

All veteran residents’ health is being monitored and retesting is being conducted for veterans both on- and off-site as clinically appropriate. As results are received, veteran residents are being cohorted and further monitored. Recovery units are being identified and readied for residents.         

This week, the veterans that are at a dedicated skilled nursing unit at Holyoke Medical Center have all been retested and results are being returned.  Additional social and recreational activities are also being added back in while maintaining social distance and proper usage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). 

The Holyoke Soldiers’ Home Clinical Command continues to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, monitoring staffing levels, while bringing on additional management staff for nursing, facilities, and administration staff to build capacity for resuming regular operations and moving to the recovery phase; Additionally, infection control staff is developing plans for dedicated recovery units. 


Regular family communication continues from Holyoke Soldiers’ Home staff through video chat, using donated iPads, and the Family Hotline is available for ad hoc updates with support from social work and clinical staff.          

Families can call the Family Hotline at 413-552-4764 Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. -  4:00 p.m. Families can also request updates via email at CommunicationsMailbox-HLY@Mass.gov.      Please note the Soldiers’ Home can only share medical information about a resident with the authorized health care proxy on file. If a family member requests an update and is not the health care proxy, the name of the health care proxy will be shared and it will be suggested that the health care proxy should call and request the update. 

Governor Charlie Baker has advised flags be lowered to half-staff until the end of the public health emergency at the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke, Soldiers' Home in Chelsea, as well as the Massachusetts Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Agawam and Winchendon due to the fact Military Honors are unavailable during this public health crisis.
The total numbers at the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home as of Thursday May 14:       

88 veteran resident deaths (74 positive, 13 negatives, 1 unknown)  

Testing results of all residents:          

74 veteran residents have tested positive         

53 veteran residents have tested negative         

  9 veteran residents have pending tests         

Resident locations:          

104 residents are onsite       

  32 residents are offsite          

  31 residents are at a dedicated skilled nursing unit at Holyoke Medical Center 

    1 resident is receiving acute care offsite                 

  83 employees have tested positive 
Chelsea Soldiers’ Home Update
The Chelsea Soldiers’ Home clinical command continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including regular coordinating calls with the VA Health Care System, and this week, welcomed the VA Boston Health Care System Incident Commander to collaborate on best practices and further testing. 

Chelsea Clinical Command monitoring and enforcing staff use of personal protective equipment (PPE), and closely monitoring staff levels, supplementing as necessary with support from contracted staff. The Home has reviewed its infection control and clinical operations with additional experts.        

Staff have been provided PPE core competency training, the entire facility is rounded on daily for infection control quality assurance checks, all units have been provided with educational materials, and there are daily cleanings throughout the facility in addition to frequent terminal cleaning.  

Veteran residents’ health is being monitored and retesting is being conducted for veterans both on- and off-site as clinically appropriate. As results are received, veteran residents are being cohorted and further monitored. Additional isolation space has been identified and is being readied. 

This week, the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home leadership and Board of Trustees accepted a generous donation from Brighton Marine of 175 iPads to help keep Veterans stay connected during the pandemic. These iPads will allow for additional video visits between veteran residents and their loved ones, which have been made with support from the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home Social Work team and staff. Families can request updates on their loved ones by contacting the Home at CSH@mass.gov and through phone and video conversations. Medical information can only be shared with an authorized health care proxy.


Governor Charlie Baker has advised flags be lowered to half-staff until the end of the public health emergency at the Soldiers' Home in Chelsea, Soldiers' Home in Holyoke, as well as the Massachusetts Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Agawam and Winchendon due to the fact Military Honors are unavailable during this public health crisis.
The total numbers at the Chelsea Soldiers’ Home as of Thursday May 14:         

38 veteran resident deaths (30 tested positive, 8 tested negative)          

36 veteran residents who have tested positive          

178 veteran residents who have tested negative          

57 staff tested positive 


COVID-19 Public Health Data
The Department of Public Health has made available the underlying data files the Department uses each day to produce the COVID-19 Dashboard, as part of a continued effort to expand the amount and type of data released to the public. The data files are updated and posted daily (by 4pm) with the dashboard report for the public, researchers, and media to download. City and town case data are published weekly each Wednesday. (Find the Data Files Here). Key data reflected in today’s report is provided below:
Please Note: Data from the Massachusetts Department of Correction’s (DOC) on-site testing program is now included in the DPH Daily COVID-19 Dashboard. 
Homeless COVID-19 Isolation Sites
The Commonwealth’s COVID-19 Command Center and MEMA have stood up regional isolation and recovery sites located in hotels across the state (click here for more information). Currently there are sites in Lexington, Pittsfield, Taunton, Northampton, and Everett. These locations are for individuals who:  Are homeless (people who normally sleep at a shelter, on the street, for whom home is unsafe due to violence, or who do not have a permanent address) AND  Who are COVID-19 positive OR have a medical provider’s note recommending isolation and can safely isolate without medical supervision.
These sites are for individuals who have mild or moderate symptoms and do not need hospital level of care or nursing facility level of care. Medical treatment is not provided on site. As noted above, individuals must have a positive COVID-19 test or must have been seen by a medical provider and directed to isolate for them to be accepted. These locations cannot support individuals who need assistance with Activities of Daily Living or who need the level of care provided at a Skilled Nursing Facility.
For shelter providers located outside Boston, please call 617-367-5150 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. The intake coordinator will determine eligibility, register an individual for the program, and have the guest placed and transported to the nearest Isolation and Recovery location that has availability. 
For shelter providers located in Boston please call 617-534-5050 to access sites in Boston.
Disaster Recovery Information  On March 27, the President declared a Major Disaster Declaration for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts related to the COVID-19 pandemic response. Through this declaration, federal aid will be made available to cities and towns, state agencies, and certain non-profits in all Massachusetts counties to help pay for emergency protective measures (response costs) related to the COVID-19 pandemic. MEMA’s Recovery Unit has developed a webpage with information and guidance on, but not limited to, disaster declaration, eligibility criteria, and the application process.
COVID-19 Public Resources Map MEMA, together with MA VOAD and other partners, has developed a COVID-19 Public Resources Map showing the location of resources available to the public, such as food banks, houses of worship, and Project Bread site locations. Please note that this map is not inclusive of all resources and is only as accurate as the information that has been provided to MEMA.
Massachusetts COVID-19 Response Dashboard MEMA has developed and maintains a public-facing COVID-19 ArcGIS Online dashboard, available here. This dashboard is continuously updated and captures information about current COVID 19 case counts, cases by age, cases by county, hospital status, hospital bed status, death tolls, and deaths by age. Users should refresh the dashboard on a daily basis as enhancements are continuously being added. 
Stay Informed
Get information from trusted sources. Visit https://www.mass.gov/covid19 for the latest news, case counts, and lab testing results. Call 2-1-1 with questions.

Text the keyword COVIDMA to 888-777 to receive notifications to your phone.

To receive these notifications in Spanish, text COVIDMAESP to 888777 

Take care of your emotional health: 

Call 2-1-1 and choose the “CALL2TALK” option. 

Samaritans is continuing operations 24/7, as always. During this unprecedented time, it can feel overwhelming to receive constant messages about COVID-19.

Call or text their 24/7 helpline any time at 877-870-4673. 

The Disaster Distress Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year, national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress.

natural or human-caused disaster, including disease outbreaks like COVID-19. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories.
Please share our Communications Resources
NEW: The DPH video “How to Safely Cover Your Face Outside of Home” is now available in Spanish, Portuguese, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Haitian Creole and Vietnamese. Please share! (Find The Videos Here)

Stop the Spread of Germs 

Social distancing: for youth for general audience 

Coping with stress or fear 

What to do if you are sick 10 tips for at-home quarantine or self-monitoring 
Short videos: 

How to Safely Cover Your Face Outside of Home 10 Tips for at home quarantine or self-monitoring.

Stop the Spread of Germs like Seasonal Flu and COVID-19 (:30)  

Help Prevent COVID-19 with Social Distancing (:30) 

How Young People Can Help Prevent COVID-19 with Social Distancing (:30) 

Coping with Stress and Fear from COVID-19 (:30) 

Stay Home - Save Lives (:06)
Spanish Radio Spots (available on request):  Prevent the Spread of Germs  Social Distancing  Stay Home. Stay Safe. Save Lives.
How to Help Out 

Donate to the Massachusetts COVID-19 Relief Fund. 

Volunteer opportunities for health professionals:

Get involved with the new Community Tracing Collaborative: 

Donate or sell personal protective equipment: 

Health care facilities can learn more about requesting personal protective equipment here.  Apply for Jobs at COVID-19 Temporary Care Sites.
The Need for Blood Donations Continues, and Recovered Covid-19 Donors Can Help Save Lives.

In coordination with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Red Cross is seeking people who are fully recovered from the new coronavirus to sign up to donate plasma to help current COVID-19 patients.

People who have fully recovered from COVID-19 have antibodies in their plasma that can attack the virus. This convalescent plasma is being evaluated as treatment for patients with serious or immediately life-threatening COVID-19

infections, or those judged by a healthcare provider to be at high risk of progression to severe or life-threatening condition. Interested individuals can visit RedCrossBlood.org/plasma4covid to learn more, and if eligible, sign up to help.

We are also encouraging people who have not had COVID-19 to schedule and keep appointments to donate blood or platelets to ensure a stable blood supply during this pandemic.

Donating blood products is essential to community health and the need for blood products is constant.

As part of our nation’s critical infrastructure, healthy individuals can still donate in areas that have issued shelter in place declarations.

The Red Cross follows the highest standards of safety and infection control, and volunteer donors are the only source of blood for those in need. To make an appointment to donate, please visit www.RedCrossBlood.org 

Requests for Red Cross Emergency Response
American Red Cross The American Red Cross (ARC) of Massachusetts is committed to fulfilling our Mission of providing emergency relief to our neighbors following a home fire or other disaster. 

We have implemented temporary changes to our response protocols.

ARC we will be responding to your requests for service with a virtual response and ask your assistance in sharing this information with your Incident Commanders and Dispatch Center personnel.
Notification: Continue to request a response by contacting our long-standing emergency line 800-564-1234. When calling: Please have contact information for the head of household for each displaced family unit. A point of contact from the Fire Department or Emergency Management on-scene that we can coordinate with if needed. Quick assessment as to extent of damage.


What we will do:  

Contact each head of household by phone or video chat.

Open a virtual case for each affected family. 

Arrange for lodging if needed. 

Deliver a Client Assistance Card (financial assistance) to hotel, family member’s home, etc.  Provide Recovery guidance and assistance in the days following the incident.
If a virtual response is not possible, we will send a minimal number of Red Cross volunteers to the scene to orchestrate the virtual intake process. We value our partnership with your department and encourage you to contact us with any questions. 


Situation in Numbers Massachusetts current as of 5/14
82,182  Total Cases (click here for more information)
5,482 Deaths
424,361 patients tested to date by MA State Public Health Laboratory, hospitals and commercial laboratories. 
United States Last Updated 5/14 Case numbers are updated regularly at noon.  Saturday/Sunday reports are preliminary and have not been confirmed with state/territorial health departments.
Total Cases Reported to CDC:  1,384,930 Total Cases  83,947 Deaths 
55 Jurisdictions Reporting Cases (50 states, D.C., Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Marianas, and US V.I.)
Social Distancing Basics: 

Stay Home  

Call/Facetime/online chat with friends and loved ones.

If you go out for essential needs:

Avoid crowds

Stay 6 feet away from others 

Don’t shake hands or hug 

Wear a face covering or mask if physical distancing is not possible.


Special Prayers To Guide Us Through
The COVID - 19 Storm
Week 4
 "We are pleased to share these prayers and inspirational messages offered by our esteemed faith leaders, and PHEN partners from around the country. 
May God bless you and keep you in good health. "
PHEN, Director of Partnerships and Outreach
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We Advocate for Change.

What do you want Changed?
"Advocates push for racial equity in recovery"
Priscilla Flint-Banks Testifies in front of Boston City Council
Priscilla Flint-Banks, quoted in the Boston Globe
That was the headline in the Boston Globe on April 24, the day after the Boston City Council had a special hearing to implore Boston to consider racial equity in COVID-19 recovery plans. Flint-Banks was quoted in the Globe: "We are suffering-- its real." Priscilla pointed out that communities of color missed out on government aid, are in need of food and everyday essentials and that masks are still needed.
Flint-Banks will testify again on Thursday, April 30 to be sure the message is heard to include people of color in good paying jobs and that the City enforce current legislative penalties for construction jobs where prime contractors do not meet the hiring standards set up by the Boston Residence Job Policy.
The public may watch this meeting via live stream at boston.gov/city-council-tv. It will also be re-broadcasted at a later date on Comcast 8/RCN 82/Verizon 1964.

Dear Community Members, Friends and Supporters:
The Black Economic Justice Institute, Inc. is actively supporting our community during this crisis. BEJI is supplying those in need by making masks, giving away grocery, laundromat and pharmacy gift cards and becoming an information resource through our website. If you need a gift card or know someone who does, please email us at: BEJICOVID19@gmail.com. Supplies are limited, but we are working hard to accommodate all those who need assistance. Below are other resources that can help you during this crisis.
Keep Informed
Get Connected
  • Good Neighbors sponsored by the city of Boston and Nesterly can help people connect; facilitating everything from deliveries to a reassuring phone call.
  • Call 2 - 1 - 1 to find out about resources available to you during the crisis, or click here to see a list of resources for families from 211, COVID-19 Family Support Fund.
  • For information on available resources, the non-emergency phone number for the city is 3- 1 -1.
City of Boston Housing and Food Resources
  • City of Boston COVID-19 Emergency Shelter, Day Programs, Community Meals and Street Outreach for People Experiencing Homelessness. Click here.
  • If you are worried about eviction, contact City Life/Vida Urbana’s Housing Hotline at (617) 934-5006 (English) or (617) 397-3773 (Español).
BEJI has grown to become a powerful voice in the Boston community as non-profit 501c3 tax-exempt organization we advocate, educate, and assist Boston’s communities of color.
BEJI has received institutional support, but the increasing demand for our services is outpacing funding. We ask that you think about donating to BEJI during this crisis, if you are still working and receiving a paycheck, we ask that you consider making a one time donation of $50, to really make a difference to a family in need.
Please donate now through PayPal or go to www.bejii.org/donate.
You can also mail us a check or money order to:
Black Economic Justice Institute
64 Star Bird Ave.
Roslindate, MA 02131
 Thank You for helping us help communities of color in Boston!
Listen to The BEJI Report
For updates on COVID-19 and other important topics, listen to The BEJI Report, Thursday's from 8:00 AM to 10 AM on 102.9 FM WBPG-LP or

PIRITUAL MINISTRIES ation Ministry of the Sisters ph of Boston

Update from
St. Joseph
Photo by Beverly Good, used with permission.
Dear Friends,
In light of Covid-19, our dear friends and collaborators, the monks at Glastonbury Abbey, have made the difficult decision to close the Abbey until September 2020. Given the seriousness of the virus, we at SJSM fully support the monks’ deep concern for the health and safety of all Glastonbury's guests. We also join our prayers for the monks and how this will affect the mission of the Abbey.
We are disappointed that this decision results in SJSM canceling our 5 summer directed retreats. All of our scheduled summer retreatants have been contacted personally. Now, we turn to the wider SJSM community in case you were planning or hoping that scheduling a summer retreat with us might still be a possibility. We do hope and pray we will be able to welcome you for retreat next summer in 2021. We also hope to schedule 1 or 2 stand-alone 4-day retreats, as they are becoming increasingly popular for a variety of reasons.
We also regret to inform you that our last scheduled (May 20th) Morning of Prayer for the 2019-2020 season is also cancelled. It is our hope to re-schedule the cancelled Mornings and Afternoons of Prayer as well as some new offerings for the 2020-21 season. We will communicate more details at a later date when we have a better sense of when we can gather 10+ safely.
Please know that we miss gathering and praying with you. We love hearing from you and we hope to welcome you again as soon as it is safe to do so. You are ever in our prayers and we are grateful for your continuing to stay connected with us through these unusual times.
Joanne A. Fantini, CSJ Agrégée
St. Joseph Spiritual Ministries
71 Walnut Park, Newton, Massachusetts, 02458.


Catholic Cruises and Tours

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Take your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholicTake your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholicTake your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholic

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Take your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholic

Take your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholic  Take your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholic Take  your FAITH ON A JOURNEY with any of our vacations-Mass is included catholic

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The Camino, a Walking Journey for the Soul

Vacation Overview


           Join us for this inspiring walking pilgrimage covering the last section of  the French St James Way from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela. Since the 9th Century, pilgrims have walked to Santiago de Compostela to have their sins forgiven and to worship the relics of the Apostle James in the Cathedral built above his tomb. The Camino de Santiago (Way of St. James) is considered a spiritual journey covering approximately 115 kilometers (72 miles) on foot in over the course of 6 days, with a local expert guide, hotel stays, and train transfers from Madrid to Sarria and from Santiago de Compostela to Madrid.


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New this year, we added Montserrat

Fatima, Lourdes and Shrines of Spain

Vacation Overview


           Reaffirm and celebrate your faith as you visit some of the world’s most treasured Marian shrines, pilgrimage sites and spiritual places. Hear about the shepherd children in Fatima and the apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary which happened over 100 years ago. Learn about St. James’ Way, the remarkable journey taken by pilgrims from all over the world into Santiago de Compostela. In Loyola, find out about the Jesuit mission St. Ignacio founded in 1540. In Lourdes, you’ll have an opportunity to join Mass, the nightly Rosary and candlelight procession as well as time to experience the Healing Baths. Spend the night by the Montserrat Sanctuary, a unique location for contemplation and worship. Lastly, a magical ending in Barcelona with time to celebrate life, reflect and rejoice. Accompanied by fellow believers and designed to offer the experience of a lifetime, this is a vacation that will stay with you forever. 

Start a search for your next religious journey   Holy Land discovery

Vacation Overview


           The roots of your faith will come to life on this extraordinary journey through the Holy Land. Follow in the footsteps of Jesus as you learn more about His life and ministry. Visit places of biblical importance like the Mount of Beatitudes or simply take time to reflect on by the Sea of Galilee. Spend time in Nazareth and visit the Basilica of the Annunciation, visit the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem, get inspired as you re-live some of the New Testament’s stories in their original settings. Jerusalem brings you even closer to Jesus as you re-trace His path along the Via Dolorosa and all the way to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. All of this—and much more—await you on a deeply spiritual vacation of a lifetime! 


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Shrines of Italy

Vacation Overview


           This affordable journey through Catholic heritage in Italy allows you to witness the most visited shrines of the country, from north to south. Discover the inspiring Catholic Italian icons of northern Italy: from Milan’s St. Ambrose to Turin’s St. John Bosco and Padua’s St. Anthony, you’ll collect memories and inspiration that will remain with you for life. Admire in awe the early Christian works of art of the Byzantine era in Ravenna, and finally spend two full days in Rome, dedicating your attention to the Papal legacies and visiting many inspiring places of worship instilling a sense of solemnity and serenity.
From here, your spiritual experience continues to the places of St. Pio, Petrelcina and San Giovanni Rotondo, and to the Sanctuaries of Loreto and Lanciano. You’ll also feel the magic atmosphere of Assisi, home to Saint Francis, immersed in the enchanting hills of Umbria.  Visit Turin—home of the Holy Shroud Museum and conclude your journey with the opportunity to attend the Papal Audience in Rome if possible. Follow in the footsteps of saints and stand near the sites of miracles.

Our comprehensive and affordable Italian vacation takes you to the most significant religious shrines of Italy. .


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About Us

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide quality, religious experiences, educational, and fun vacation options specifically designed for the Catholic Community. We participant with Catholic Churches in the United States and Canada and help make opportunities available for their parishioners and family to see the world. Our vacation options range from the Holy land, Fatima and Lourdes, Catholic Italy, Pilgrimages to Lourdes, Catholic Ireland, Shrines of France, Shrines of Alpine and of course cruises all over the world. The Apostleship of the Sea of the United States of America and Catholic Cruises and Tours work hand in hand with making your Catholic experience a reality.  We manage over 1000 cruises that have VETTED Priest onboard for daily Mass and we manage over 2000 religious tours per year. The Mass is included in all of our journeys.  
Having a dedicated priest onboard our cruises provides an excellent opportunity to interact intimately while you enjoy the beautiful areas of the world God has made for us. If cruising is not your cup of tea, then our land tours to see the Holy Land, the Vatican in Italy, and other areas of the world that have dramatically contributed to the proliferation of our Faith are available for your consideration. Would you like to experience the Sea of Galilee or attend a Mass given by Pope Francis? Let us know. We are able to arrange wonderful opportunities for you and your loved ones to enjoy and explore.


Our Services

Did you know that we have a Priest onboard every weekly departure with Holland America Cruise Line?  The Signature of Excellence earned by Holland America and the wonderful work that every Priest provides each  Catholic Cruise passenger is evident on each cruise.  

Click on the SEARCH button above and start searching over 1000 sailings or  CALL us and let us know when you want to go and we will find the perfect  Holland America cruise so you can attend Mass daily and be PAMPERED.


Making your reservation with us, helps support our Priest program and makes it easy for you to” Take your FAITH ON A JOURNEY"


By the way, we also provide Priest on Royal Caribbean, Seabourn and MSC.


Our Promise

 While working with us, we want you to be completely happy with the experience. If you have questions about us, our services, or even travel tips, get in touch! We hope you continue to book with us for many years to come. 


Meet the Team

Advertisers and Charities

If you are an Charity or Advertiser, please forward all correspondence to:

or by SNAIL MAIL to:

41 Vernon Road East Hartford, Connecticut 06108



 Eileen Constant

Catholic Cruises and Tours Sales Manager

Email: Eileen@CatholicCruisesandTours.com

Sales and Marketing

 Doug Payette
Catholic Cruises and Tours Managing Director
Reservation  and Cruises and Tours Information Phone: 860-399-1785
Phone: London U.K. 011 44 20 3371 0305

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We'd love to hear from you!

Have a question about our services? Want to see if your particular RELIGIOUS vacation is one we can help with? We'd love to hear from you!

Catholic Cruises and Tours

(860) 399-1785

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Bilingual people needed to mentor ESOL students

A Faith That Does Justice is seeking bilingual people (English and Spanish and/or Portuguese) with strong interpersonal skills to mentor ESOL students. The Student Relationship Manager (SRM) will work in partnership with Class Teachers/Tutors to engage (email, text, phone calls) with each student to provide recognition of their efforts, acknowledge the challenges of learning a new language, encourage active and on-going attendance, and follow up with any student who is absent to offer genuine concern, help, and support in an "all out" effort to enable the students.  The SRM will also provide "light weight" technical support to any student needing assistance with accessing or downloading apps required for the class. The role is remote and each SRM will mentor approximately 5 students who have registered for 2 classes per week.

If you are interested in mentoring  ESOL students, please send an email expressing your interest to Paul DelVecchio at pdelvecchio@faith-justice.org or call (508) 397-3623.