12th Annual Red Mass to honor eight local legal professionals
SPRINGFIELD – Eight local legal professionals will receive the prestigious St. Thomas More Award in late September from Springfield Bishop Timothy A. McDonnell.
The diocesan St. Thomas More Society of Catholic legal professionals has announced this year’s recipients. They are Judge John a. Agostini, associate justice of Springfield Superior Court; John R. Fitzgerald, a licensed social worker who is assistant superintendent at the Hampden County House of Correction; Judge William P. Hadley, associate justice of Springfield District Court; retired Attorney Richard C. Morrissey from Springfield; Attorney Carla W. Newton, a private practice lawyer from Springfield; Attorney Maurice C. Powe, a private practice lawyer from Springfield; Attorney Paula Carroll Tredeau, a private practice attorney from Springfield; and Judge Paul M. Vrabel, associate justice of Pittsfield District Court.
They will receive their honors during a special liturgy marking the 12th Annual Diocesan Red Mass on Sunday, Sept. 29 at 10 a.m. at St. Michael’s Cathedral, 260 State St., Springfield. A brunch at The Log Cabin on the Holyoke/Easthampton line will follow the Mass.
The Red Mass is a longstanding tradition in the Catholic Church, invoking the blessing and guidance of the Holy Spirit upon the courts. It dates back to the 13th century when it officially opened the term of the court for most European countries.
This tradition was introduced in the United States in 1928 in the Church of St. Andrew, located in New York City. It was presided over by Cardinal Patrick Hayes, who strongly encouraged and supported the involvement of the legal community in spreading the word of God.
For ticket information on the brunch that will follow the liturgy, interested persons can call 413-734-3119.