• Sodality of Charity

RIP Our Pastor Bishop Dolan

Dear members and friends of the Sodality of Charity,


Our dear pastor, Bishop Daniel L. Dolan, died suddenly on April 26, 2022, on the feast of the Our Lady of Good Counsel. Shortly before he died, he posted on Twitter his final words of encouragement:


Blessed feast of the Mother of Good Counsel! How Our Lady has helped and protected us under this generous title over the years. A novena begun today ends May 4, Solemnity of St. Joseph, Ordination Day for our four priests: a providential help for many souls. Pray with us?


Pray too that Our Lady’s Good Counsel will help heal painful divisions by correcting the current errors concerning the Church and the papacy. Only she can help, which is why she was given to us. She holds Jesus, Angel of Great Counsel, in her arms. Counsel and protect us, we pray.


The Mother of Good Counsel is called the Madonna of Popes. The last, Pius XII, took her for the Patroness of his pontificate. While highly clerical today, this devotion exemplifies the Lay Apostolate: Petruccia, a wealthy widow who worked on repairing the old shrine, all alone...


Meanwhile, back in Albania, the national hero Skanderberg loved her tenderly, and the two laymen followed Our Lady’s image to Italy, not content until they found her. Imitate them, follow her. She’ll give you her Jesus, her Great Counsel. Always ask: Mother, what am I to do?


We are all heartbroken for having lost our beloved pastor and father so suddenly. We buried him on May 4, the First Wednesday of the month, the Solemnity of St. Joseph, who is the patron of good death. Instead of the joyful day of ordination, it ended up being a sorrowful day of mourning. But our sorrow was eased a little thanks to the numerous condolences and prayers which the faithful and clergy from all over the world showed us. Bishop Rodrigo da Silva, whom Bishop Dolan had consecrated just last September to help him in the South American missions and training of clergy there, travelled to be with us here at St. Gertrude the Great to do the funeral and burial. Also in attendance at the funeral and burial was Bishop Mark Pivarunas, the Bishop who consecrated Bishop Dolan in 1993, and also many of his priests and nuns.



Our Sodality girls helped in the arrangements of the funeral day by cooking a delicious breakfast for the funeral guests on Wednesday. God reward them their charity and their support on this difficult but still a beautiful day.



Our pastor is gone, but he will not be forgotten. Our Sodality girls should pray for him every day, out of gratitude for him and for his zeal for souls and the Catholic Faith. Here is one beautiful prayer to St. Joseph, the patron of our Sodality:


Great Saint Joseph, who hast so tenderly loved Jesus and felt so keenly the loss of His Presence during the time that thou wast in Limbo, I earnestly recommend to thee the soul of ... who may at this moment be suffering in Purgatory. Be thou his consoler in that place of suffering and expiation! Deign to apply to him the pious suffrages of the faithful, particularly my own; be thou his intercessor with Jesus and Mary and obtain by thy prayers that, delivered from the bonds that hold him in captivity, he may fly to the bosom of God, there to be eternally in the enjoyment of those delights with which the elect are blessed. Amen.


You can read the obituary of Bishop Dolan here.


Here you can see Fr. McKenna’s eulogy for our Bishop:



But in the midst of sorrow, we must keep the things going. Bishop da Silva will be staying with us for a while, and on Wednesday, May 11, the octave day of the Solemnity of St. Joseph, he will ordain our four Deacons to priesthood. The ceremony will start at 10 AM. I hope all our Sodality members and their families can be there for this occasion, which will bring much joy in the midst of our sorrow. Our priests’ first Masses will be on Thursday, May 12, at 9 AM.


Our Wednesday streak of ceremonies, which started with a funeral, and continues with an ordination, will end with the episcopal consecration of Fr. Charles McGuire on Wednesday, May 18, the feast of St. Eric of Sweden. Bishop da Silva will consecrate Fr. McGuire as our new Bishop in the ceremony which starts at 10 AM. Our new Bishop has chosen as his episcopal motto the words of St. Paul from the second Epistle to the Corinthians: “Charity of Christ urgeth us.”


You can Fr. McGuire’s announcement of his consecration here.


Our next Sodality monthly meeting will be held as scheduled on Saturday, May 21, after the High Mass, ending at 2 PM with a Rosary. We will continue making Rosaries and prepare for our Girls Camp, which will be held on July 12-14.


I celebrated the May monthly Mass for our Sodality members on Monday, May 2. Please remember also our first Fatima Rosary procession on Friday, May 13, at 7:15 PM, starting from First Watch parking lot, corner of Union Centre Blvd and Floer Dr, West Chester.


Hope to see you all at our joyful celebrations of ordinations and consecration, and at our May monthly meeting.


Yours in Christ and Mary,


Fr. Lehtoranta