TO THE EDITOR:
Thank you so much for sharing the wonderful memories of Frs. Nicholas Iacovacci and Robert Randall as they celebrate their 70th anniversary of priestly ordination. Ad multos annos!
A very dear friend and mentor, who has since gone to his eternal reward, was ordained in that fairly large ordination class by His Excellency, Bishop Russell J. McVinney, on May 19, 1951 - Fr. René E. Gagné.
After serving honorably as curé of Précieux-Sang in Woonsocket for over two decades as well as in various other assignments, such as Ste. Anne and Ste. Famille in Woonsocket and St. Jean Baptiste in West Warwick, in his retirement years, Fr. Gagné became a spiritual advisor to me, my family, and to a number of others. A well-traveled and cultured priest, L’abbé Gagné’s warm sense of humor, his theological and spiritual acumen, his care of souls, and certainly his love of sacred, classical, and operatic music will never be forgotten. His life saw the value of all good things in the mystery of Christ. He would often celebrate the traditional Latin Mass for groups of us seminarians. Priestly holiness, praying the Divine Office, and devotion to Our Lady were the hallmarks of his clear guidance in the interior life.
May Christ the High Priest grant many years to the ordination class of 1951 and eternal rest to those who have gone before!
Father Albert P. Marcello, III, J.C.D. (Cand.)