As you well know, we have been blessed here at the Collaborative by the outpouring of support for Fr. Jim from his brother priests. Since June, we have been celebrating Mass with guest celebrants from nearby parishes as well as with priests from the Jesuit Community at Boston College. We are going to be featuring our guest celebrants in the bulletin and on the website in the coming weeks to help you learn a little bit about them and put faces with names!

Fr. Richard Clifford, S.J.

Fr. Richard Clifford is a native of Lewiston, Maine and the sixth of eight children of William and Alice (Sughrue) Clifford, respectively, a lawyer and full-time home-maker. After his freshman year at the College of the Holy Cross, he entered the Jesuits. In the course of his studies, he became aware of his love for the Bible, subsequently earning a Ph.D. at Harvard.

He taught the Bible for four decades in Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, which in 2008 became part of the new Boston College School of Theology and Ministry. He continues to teach part-time at BC. He is especially interested in the books of Genesis, Isaiah, Psalms, and the Wisdom literature.

He has served as Dean twice and published in various journals as well as doing adult education in New England parishes, and is a frequent contributor to America Magazine and other publications.

Fr. Joseph Hennessey

Born in Dorchester and raised in Braintree, Fr. Joe is the oldest of six children born to Paul and Sally (Walsh) Hennessey. After one year at Boston College, he transferred St. John Seminary College. After graduating, he took a five year leave of absence, during which he worked with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, attended Suffolk Law School for one year, and taught at St. Columbkille in Brighton.

Feeling the call back to the priesthood, Fr. Joe finished the last two years of theology and was ordained a priest in 1988. After four years at St. Margaret’s in Dorchester, the Archdiocese asked Fr. Joe to work at the Marriage Tribunal, so he earned his Licentiate in Canon Law in 1996 from St. Paul University in Ottawa.

Following his work at the Tribunal, Fr. Joe has ministered at a number of parishes around the Archdiocese, and is now in residence at Good Shepherd in Wayland.

Fr. Brett O’Neill, S.J.

Fr. O’Neill is a recently-ordained Australian Jesuit studying at Boston College’s School of Theology and Ministry.

Before entering the Society of Jesus in 2014, Fr. O’Neill worked in public policy with the Australian Government. As a Jesuit he has worked in policy advocacy with Jesuit Social Services, Melbourne, and as a support worker accompanying newly-arrived migrants.

He is interested in exploring how the Church can engage more constructively with governments and policymakers to better promote the common good.

Getting to Know Our Guest Celebrants