Novitiate 1953

Novitiate Class of 1953. 48 Members of this class went on to Ordination in 1958.

This structure was probably once an old barn.

Holy Week Services: Father Charles Magsam, M.M. officiating.

The priest-celebrant is J. Ryan Heisse, a priest who joined Maryknoll and took his novitiate with us. Behind him is Fr. Ed McGurken, our Novice Master.

Christmas at the Novitiate. The next couple of pics were taken either after Midnight Mass or on Christmas Day. We were not home for Christmas but we were all part of the Maryknoll family.

The following pics took place on the night a fierce storm blacked out the entire area. We were allowed to hang out, talking and singing and using candles to find our way. Behind the weird fellow in the front are future missioners Tom Peyton and Joe Sullivan.

We were entertained one night by Johnny Pesky, Red Sox star on the left now in his 80's and still beloved in Boston, a retired AL umpire and 2 other gentlemen. They regaled us with baseball tales and anecdotes.

The priest enjoying the entertainment with us is Father Ed McGurken, Novice Master. To our dismay, he was reassigned near the end of the Novitiate year. He was consecrated Bishop in 1956 and named Bishop of Shinyanga, Tanzania where he died in 1983.

This is the kitchen crew mimicking the cook Brother Boniface. Note the ladles used as halos!

We buried Boniface the following year at the Knoll. Rumor had it that he was embalmed with Kitchen Bouquet (his favorite additive) and with a ladle in his hand.

This is Jim Byrne entertaining us during mealtime. The late Father David I. Walsh is on the right.

Jim was a kind, gentle man with fine artistic ability. His health was always tenuous but he persevered. He was ordained and assigned to Japan. His love of the Japanese people led him to leave Maryknoll and enter the diocese of Oita, Japan. Illness brought him home to his parents where he died. While no longer a Maryknoller, he is buried at the Knoll.

This is a fledgling I found abandoned in the woods around the Novitiate. I brought it to my room, made a nest-like setting under a goose neck lamp to keep it warm.

I "purloined" an eye dropper from the Infirmary and a daily egg from the kitchen which I whipped up and fed it through the dropper. It grew prodigiously. It chirped each time I came into the room. I even tried to teach it to fly. When its chirps got louder and louder and it began to do things a bird does, I had to return it to the wild. It was a tearful good bye.

The Novice with the cigar is Joe Sullivan.

Easter Morn after Midnight Mass 1954: The Novices were happy that the Lenten fast was finally over. In this picture there are those who left their studies; those who were ordained; those who returned to the lay life; some died of natural causes, one was murdered in Guatemala, another by a sniper's bullet in Vietnam. Little did we know that happy morning what lay in store for each of us.

Ed Moore and Tom Mantica-both ordained. Little Tom was a lovable guy with a dry sense of humor. He died in a plane crash in the Sudan in 1978.

Ed Richardson on the left: a quiet, unassuming man who became a successful and beloved missioner in Korea. He died and was buried in Seoul in 1973.

A gaggle of Novices just hanging out.

Novices in front of the Brothers' Residence. The white haired gentleman in the rear is one of the Brothers. Why we were there and all dressed up for the occasion eludes me.

The Novitiate year came to an end one year minus a day from the time we arrived. On the last day the Novices were to take the first Maryknoll Oath which allowed us to wear the Maryknoll symbol on our cinctures.

The Oath was administered by Richard Cardinal Cushing of Boston. He arrived late for the ceremony in the Chapel which added to our anxiety and tension since we all wanted to go home.

He finally arrived and strode down the aisle with his booming Boston-accented voice dropping his "r's" all over the place. This caused one or two us to go into an uncontrollable laughing jag. But it was done and we all scattered and headed home.

Sit finis anni, non finis quaerendi.