Record-Breaking Year at the 42nd Annual Lawn Party

Lawn Party 2023 Main

On Wednesday evening, September 27th, over 300 guests gathered in the Mary Courtyard to celebrate the formation of Catholic priests at Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary - raising record revenue of over $400,000 to support the formation program.


His Eminence Cardinal Seán O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston and Chairman of the Board, hosts the evening every year but this year he was called to Rome. We were honored to have Bishop Mark O’Connell, Vicar General and Moderator of the Curia, host the event in Cardinal Seán’s absence. Mary Anne and Dan Lagan of Natick were the Lawn Party Chairpersons. Dan spoke to the guests about why his family supports this unique Seminary and these future priests.


Pat Bruen is a seminarian in formation for the Archdiocese of Detroit and he addressed the attendees with his vocation story. Pat has a technical background and worked for many years in the IT field. He was married for 40 years and raised three children who are all married. Pat is the proud grandfather of 14 with another one on the way. When his wife passed away, leaning on a faith that always sustained him, he began to feel called to the priesthood. He did not think it was possible at first, but Pope Saint John XXIII Seminary gave him the option. Pat’s outstanding talk resonated in people’s hearts, and you could almost hear a pin drop as we listened in rapt attention.


Anna-Marie Ferraro of Winchester was presented with the 2023 Pacem In Terris Award. Throughout the years, Anna-Marie’s support of the formation of men for priesthood has deeply touched the men in the program at the Seminary and has impacted the advancement of the Church. Her touch is quiet, loyal, humble and generous. Anna-Marie’s contributions to the Church spread wide and are felt throughout the Archdiocese of Boston, at the archdiocesan level, the seminary level, and parish level. We are uplifted and inspired by her quiet and steadfast support that ensures the vibrancy and health of the Catholic Church. Her example is one of humble service. In all of this, she exemplifies the spirit of Pacem In Terris. Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary is honored to have Anna-Marie Ferraro be the first recipient of this award.


We gathered under the tent for enjoyable conversation, music, and wonderful food with many alumni, benefactors, and seminarians. Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary is grateful to all who donated to support the formation of future priests and making this a record-breaking fundraising year for the Seminary.