Since arriving in the neighborhood last Thanksgiving weekend, Fr. John Sheridan immediately felt at home in Charlestown.
“I have worked all over the area, and although I had never worked in Charlestown before, I felt right at home from the beginning, and right from the beginning, people have been marvelous,” said Fr. Sheridan, pastor of the Charlestown Catholic Collaborative, comprising the parishes of St. Francis de Sales, and St. Mary-St. Catherine, as well as Harvest on Vine food pantry and Good Shepherd School, both of which are under the auspices of St. Mary-St. Catherine. “Also, it helps that I’m a big hockey fan,” he added.
A native of Newton, Fr. Sheridan hails from a family of eight brothers and sisters. His father, Denis, came from County Mayo, Ireland, while his mother, Elizabeth, was baptized at St. Joseph in Somerville. And for Fr. Sheridan, now 59, the church has always been a constant in his life.
“I have always been very much a part of my parish,” he said. “My family has always been good Catholics. That’s how God works – He works in families first, and along the way, step by step, friends and other folks continue to develop what was always there, given to me by God and led me to where I am today, leading two great parishes in Charlestown.”
A product of Mary Immaculate of Lourdes Parish, the Newton Public Schools, and St. John’s Seminary in Brighton, Fr. Sheridan was ordinated a Diocesan priest in 1990. He has served as curate, chaplain, and pastor in a variety of assignments throughout the Archdiocese, including three collaboratives. His previous assignment was Blessed Mother of the Morning Star Parish, comprising of Our Lady of Grace in Chelsea/Everett and St. Mary of the Assumption in Revere/Malden.
Since coming to Charlestown, Fr. Sheridan has lived at St. Catherine’s rectory while working at both St. Mary-St. Catherine and St. Francis de Sales parishes.
“I know I am filling the shoes of two great pastors, Fr. Dan Mahoney and Fr. Jim Ronin,” he said.
Fr. Sheridan extends his gratitude to Sr. Nancy Citro, SNDdeN, St Mary- St Catherine’s pastoral associate; James Santosuosso, the Charlestown Catholic Collaborative’s finance and operations director; Joan and Ken Rae; and the staffs and councils of the Parish Councils “for their dedication and hard work on behalf of the Charlestown Catholic Family.”
Moreover, Fr. Sheridan said: “I’m also thankful to Rev. JD Mangrum at Christ Church for his warm welcome, insight, and prayerful encouragement.”
In anticipation of the future, Fr. Sheridan invokes one of his oft-used phrases: “Look up. Look ahead.”
He added, “As we are grateful for the incredible history that surrounds us here, our hearts are always looking ahead for new ways to serve Christ. May we build together in hope and confidence in Christ.”
Fr. John will be formally installed as pastor of both parishes on June 4 by his St. John’s Seminary classmate, Most Rev. Mark O’Connell.
The day’s events will include a special 11 a.m. Mass at St. Mary’s (St. Mary – St. Catherine of Siena), followed by a reception at St. Francis’ Bishop Lawton Hall.
“Please join us for Holy Week, Sacramental celebrations and on June 4 as we all look up and look ahead,” said Fr. Sheridan.