Tag: Religion & Churches

Reverend Edward H. Flannery

Edward H. Flannery was born in Providence, Rhode Island, on August 20, 1912, to John Flannery, a police officer, and Elizabeth (Mulvey) Flannery. He attended Holy Name School and LaSalle Academy. In preparation for the priesthood, he studied at St. Charles College in Catonsville, Maryland, and went on to earn a bachelor’s degree at St.

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Barbara Papitto

Barbara A. Papitto was born in Providence on April 4, 1951, to Emile and Flora (Dandeneau) Auger. The youngest of five siblings, she grew up in the Wanskuck neighborhood of Providence with her four brothers. Her parents worked in local mills and factories, earning only minimum wage. Yet, even on the tightest budgets, her mother,

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Reverend John Callender

The Reverend John Callender (1706-1748) became the first historian of Rhode Island in 1738 when he wrote a work to commemorate the colony’s centennial. Not surprisingly, he viewed his topic through a religious prism; surprisingly, he thought the arrival of William Coddington, Anne Hutchinson, Dr. John Clarke, and other Aquidneck settlers in 1638 truly launched

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Dr. John J. McLaughlin

The marvelous story of Rhode Island’s own John Joseph McLaughlin leads one through more twists and turns than a Rocky Point roller coaster. Born on March 29, 1927 to Augustus and Eva (Turcotte) McLaughlin, he grew up in the neighborhoods of Edgewood and Mount Pleasant. His earliest run at greatness included stints as a pharmacy

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Harold W. Browning

Harold W. Browning, 1893-1987, graduated from Rhode Island State College in 1914, and received his doctorate from the University of Wisconsin. He was Director of Graduate Studies, Dean of Men, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Vice President, and Vice President Emeritus of the University at the University of Rhode Island. During his

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David Wilkinson

David Wilkinson (1771-1852) a Pawtucket native, was a successful Industrial Revolution-era inventor and mill owner. When an historical movement is particularly successful, it is logical that there would be many claims of authorship. This is certainly true of the Industrial Revolution and the beginnings of the American factory system. At the center of the Industrial

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Dr. Ernest S. Frerichs

Ernest S. Frerichs is a man of three careers and a graduate of three New England universities: Brown, Harvard, and Boston. Born in Staten Island and educated in the public schools of New York City, Dr. Frerichs served with the U.S. Army in Europe during WW II. His careers have included that of clergyman at

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Anne M. Hutchinson

Anne Hutchinson was born in Lincolnshire, England, in 1591, the daughter of an English clergyman named Francis Marbury, who was censured by the Anglican Church for his Puritan leanings (the Puritans wanted to purify the Church of England from any vestiges of the rejected Roman Catholic religion). In August 1612, the well-bred and educated Anne

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Gertrude Hochberg

Gertrude Hochberg was Vice-President of Bryant College and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where she majored in Journalism. She was a past President of the Rhode Island Advertising Club, and a member of the Board of the National Council of Christians and Jews. She also served as Director of the Speakers Bureau for

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Mother Mary Frances Xavier Warde

Mother Mary Frances Xavier Warde, 1840-1884, was the American founder of the Sisters of Mercy (R.S.M.). Born in Ireland to fairly prosperous parents, she was orphaned in her teens. At age sixteen she moved to Dublin where she met Catherine McAuley, a social service worker, who established the Sisters of Mercy in 1831 to provide

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Dr. John William Keefe

State and national eminence in the medical profession came to Dr. John W. Keefe of Providence, Rhode Island, through his exceptional skill as a surgeon and his many notable and humane achievements in a career in which his service in his chosen profession was distinguished for nearly half a century. He was a founder of

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Reverend William Blackstone

William Blackstone (1595-1675) was born in Whickham, Durham, England, the son and namesake of a wealthy landowner and poultryman whose surname was also spelled “Blaxton” or “Blackston.” Young William earned his A.B. and M.A. from Emmanuel College of Cambridge University in 1617 and 1621, respectively, and he then became an ordained clergyman of the Anglican

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Maxwell Mays

Maxwell Mays,1918-2009,was a lay preacher in his hometown of Greenville, Rhode Island, and one of the top painters of folk art in the United States. He exhibited in many of the major cities across the nation, and was past President of the Providence Art Club. His work, featuring traditional New England scenes, was published in

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Reverend Francis Wayland

Reverend Francis Wayland, 1796-1856, was a prominent Baptist minister, the president of Brown University (1826-1855), pastor of Providence’s First Baptist Church, and an influential moral philosopher. Wayland, the son and namesake of a Baptist minister, was born in New York City and graduated from Union College. Then, after two years of medical study, he attended

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Bishop William Stang

William Stang (1854-1907) was born in Langenbucken, Germany, studied for the Catholic priesthood at Louvain in Belgium, and was ordained in June 1878. Little else is known of his early life. Irish-born bishop Thomas F. Hendricken (whose surname indicates his German ancestor) sought a German-speaking priest for the small but growing German community in the

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George Katz

The late George Katz, formerly of East Providence, became the first Executive Director of the Big Brothers of Rhode Island, and served as Director of Development for Big Brothers of America for ten years.He traveled extensively throughout the U.S., establishing Big Brother agencies. He worked as a Community Relations Director and fund-raiser for Miriam Hospital,

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Daniel P. Reilly

Father Daniel P. Reilly, a native of South Providence, was ordained as a Catholic Priest in 1953. He then went on to become personal secretary to Bishop McVinney, and rose to Chancellor and then Vicar General of the Providence Diocese. On August 6, 1975, he was installed as Bishop of Norwich.

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Arnold Buffum

Arnold Buffum, hatmaker, inventor, and abolitionist, was the second son among William Buffum’s and Lydia Arnold’s eight children. He was born on December 13, 1782, and raised in a farmhouse near Smithfield’s Union Village, now part of North Smithfield. Arnold’s childhood home, called the William Buffum House for his Quaker father, who built it, still

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Reverend Angelo D’Agostino S.J., M.D.

Father Angelo D’Agostino, 1926-2006 was born on January 26, 1926 in Providence, Rhode Island and died at work in Nairobi, Kenya on November 20, 2006. Raised in the Mount Pleasant section of Providence, Angelo was educated at Holy Ghost School, LaSalle Academy, and St. Michael’s College in Vermont. He received both an M.D. and Master’s

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Rev. Dr. Robert C. Newbold

The late Reverend Robert C. Newbold, 1920-2008, of Providence was a former Professor, Dean, Vice-Rector and Rector of Our Lady of Providence Preparatory Seminary and was former Executive Secretary of the Committee on Athletics for the Rhode Island Secondary School’s Principals association, retiring after 26 years in the profession. He guided the State’s Interscholastic League

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Rev. Aloysius B. Begley O.P.

Aloysius Patrick Begley (1905-1978) was born July 19, 1905, one of four brothers and two sisters, to Thomas J. and Bernadette (Murphy) Begley of Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. After his primary education, he entered the Lindsay Collegiate Institute in Lindsay, Ontario, and then was transferred to Providence College in 1927 as a pre-ecclesiastic student, before his

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Reverend James Fitton

Fitton, James, 1805-1881 Reverend James Fitton was one of New England’s foremost Catholic missionary priests. The energetic and seemingly ubiquitous Fitton was a driving force in the development of Rhode Island Catholicism establishing twenty widely-scattered parishes and serving in every major area of early Irish settlement including Newport, Providence, Pawtucket, Woonsocket, and the Pawtuxet Valley.

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Monsignor Charles Dauray

Dauray, Charles, 1838-1931 Monsignor Charles Dauray, regarded by his contemporaries as the Dean of Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Providence, was born in Marieveille, Quebec on March 15, 1838. At the age of thirty-two he was ordained a priest and assigned to teach at a local college. Dogged by ill-health and overwork, Dauray was

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Bernard E. Bell

Bernard E. Bell, a retired business executive who lead Hospice Care for Rhode Island. He received the “Man of the Year Award”, presented by Hospice America, and was very active in public and civic service. He served as Trustee of the Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, Director of the Rhode Island Children’s Friend and Service,

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Rt. Rev. John Seville Higgins D.D.

John Seville Higgins was born in London England on April 14, 1904.He immigrated to the United States in 1923 and became a naturalized citizen in 1936. A graduate of Oberlin College in Ohio, with both baccalaureate and master’s degrees. He entered Seabury-Western Theological Seminary in Evanston Illinois where he received a bachelor’s degree in divinity.

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Bishop Alexander Viets Griswold

Griswold, Alexander V. (Alexander Viets), 1766-1843 Bishop Alexander Viets Griswold (1766-1843) was one of the most prominent American churchmen of the early nineteenth century. He was born in Simsbury, Connecticut, the son of Elisha Griswold and Eunice Viets who were farmers. As a young boy he came under the influence of his uncle Roger Viets,

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Rev. Dr. Elisha Benjamin Andrews

Although E. Benjamin Andrews had only one eye – the result of a Civil War wound during the siege of Peterburg in August 1864 – some say he was the most visionary president of Brown University. During his nine-year tenure as the eighth chief executive of Brown, he moved it from its status of a

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Ade Bethune

Ade Bethune, 1914-2002, of Newport, whose world-renowned expertise in liturgical architecture and iconography led her to a distinguished career as a much sought-after consultant for church planning. She held special concern for less fortunate parishes, as well as community efforts to include low-income housing, solar heating, and energy efficiency. A recipient of six Honorary Degrees

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Samuel Gorton

Samuel Gorton was born in or around 1592 in the small village of Gorton, just outside of Manchester, England, a location that suggests that his family had some local prominence. Though Samuel (he spelled it with a double l) disclaimed a formal education, he was both literate and a linguist who could read the Bible

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Harriet Ware

Harriet Ware was born on July 12, 1799, in Paxton, Massachusetts, a small town just northwest of Worcester and about thirteen miles northeast of the town of Ware, settled by her ancestors. Little is known about her formative years. The brief sketch of her life by her benefactor, the Reverend Francis Wayland, president of Brown

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Thomas Williams Bicknell

Bicknell, Thomas Williams, 1834-1925 Thomas W. Bicknell (1834-1925) of Barrington was one of the two outstanding historians of Rhode Island during the first half of the 20th century (Dr. Charles Carroll was the other). In 1920 he published a three-volume narrative history of the state, supplemented by three biographical volumes. This work is still of

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John J. Fawcett

John J. Fawcett of North Kingstown earned international acclaim during an outstanding thirty-seven year career with the Providence Journal Company. He was an accomplished sports and editorial cartoonist, and a champion for the rights of others. He gained four National Brotherhood Awards from the National Conference of Christians and Jews, and his prolific works have

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Archibald & Ida Silverman

Archibald Silverman , 1880-1967, was a Providence jewelry manufacturer, and civic leader for many years; his wife, Ida Silverman was a crusader for the establishment of the State of Israel and played an important role in fund-raising for Rhode Island hospitals. The Silvermans aided in building nearly one hundred synagogues throughout the world. Archibald Silverman

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Joseph Banigan

Joseph Banigan (1839-1898) and his parents were part of a wave of Irish Catholic refugees who fled the Potato Famine in Ireland. Arriving in Rhode Island in 1847, he attended school for one year before becoming a full-time worker at age nine. Over the next fifty years he employed the “pluck and luck” characteristics of

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Caroline Hazard

Caroline Hazard, educator, philanthropist, artist, and author was born in Peace Dale, Rhode Island, on June 10, 1856. She was the second of five children of industrialist Rowland Hazard II and Margaret A. (Rood) Hazard of Peace Dale. Caroline grew up with all the privileges her prominent family could afford – private tutors, European vacations,

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Marie Rose Ferron

Marie Rose Ferron was born to devout Catholic parents on May 24, 1902, in the countryside near Quebec. Her mother had dedicated each of her 15 children to the mysteries of the Rosary. As the tenth child, Marie Rose honored the Crucifixion. These extraordinary circumstances surrounding Rose’s birth seemed to foreshadow her destiny. Rose’s spiritual

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Roger Williams

Roger Williams (1603? -1683), Rhode Island’s most famous personage, was born in London, the son of James Williams, a merchant, and Alice Pemberton. Remarkably, the precise year of his birth is unknown, and Williams himself gave conflicting accounts of his age. As a very young man, he broke with the Anglican state church and joined

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Reverend Mahlon Van Horne

Reverend Mahlon Van Horne (1840-1910) had a career that ranged from minister of the Gospel at the black Union Congregational Church at Newport to minister of diplomacy as United States Consul to St. Thomas in the West Indies. He was at heart always a teacher. Bom in Princeton New Jersey in 1840, Van Horne was

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Reverend William Ellery Channing

Reverend William Ellery Channing (April 7, 1780 – October 2, 1842) was born in Newport, a grandson of William Ellery, a Rhode Island signer of the Declaration of Independence. He was also raised in Newport prior to graduating from Harvard in 1798. Thereafter he often visited Rhode Island, but he made his career in Boston

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Sister Mary Bernard RSM

Sister Mary Bernard served the community as a dedicated religious educator and Mercy missionary for over sixty years. She continued at St. Mary’s Academy well into her eighties where she has been a teacher, Principle, and Head of the Guidance Department. She was also Principle and taught for many years at St. Xavier Academy and

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Dr. John Clarke

Dr. John Clarke (1609-1676) was the son of Thomas and Rose (Kerrich) Clarke. He was born in Westhorpe, Suffolk, in 1609, the fifth of seven children (according to a listing in the family’s Geneva Bible) and the third of five sons, four of whom ultimately settled in Newport. Before he left England, he was probably

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M. Therese Antone RSM, Ed.D.

Therese Antone was born in Central Falls, the third of seven children raised by Florence Smith Antone and George Antone, a cobbler. After graduation from Cumberland High School, she earned a bachelor’s degree from Salve Regina University, a master’s from Villanova University, and a Doctor of Education degree from Harvard University. She also completed the

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Rabbi Leslie Yale Gutterman

Rabbi Leslie Y. Gutterman, the son of David and Winifred Gutterman, grew up in Flint, Michigan. He received a B A degree from the University of Michigan and a Doctor of Divinity degree from Hebrew Union College. In 1970, he completed his graduate studies and was ordained a rabbi. Les Gutterman never intended to work

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Sister Eileen Murphy RSM

The late Sister Murphy was founder of the Amos House in Providence for the care of the homeless and needy of Rhode Island. A tireless worker for the cause of homeless men and women and helping to provide daily services, including food for low-income Rhode Islanders. Sister Murphy dedicated a lifetime to the teaching and

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Mary (Barrett) Dyer

Mary (Barrett) Dyer (ca. 1611-1660) was the wife of William Dyer of Somersetshire, England, with whom she came to Massachusetts in the mid-1630s. According to Massachusetts Governor John Winthrop, Mrs. Dyer was “a very proper and fair woman,” and she and her husband were well educated. During the Antinomian controversy that rocked the Bay Colony

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Bishop Thomas F. Hendricken

Hendricken, Thomas Francis, Bishop, 1827-1886 Bishop Thomas F. Hendricken was born in Ireland just outside the Town of Kilkenny, County Leinster, on May 5, 1827. His father John, descended from a German officer named Hendricken who fought at the Battle of the Boyne in 1691 for the Catholic cause, was a farmer who scratched an

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Monsignor Anthony Bove

Anthony Bove was born on May 17, 1877 at Albano di Lucania, Italy, the son of well-to-do parents. After receiving a thorough classical and theological education, he was ordained to the priesthood at the age of twenty-two by reason of his high scholastic standing. Immediately thereafter he came to Rhode Island to do parish work

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Brother Adelard Beaudet

Brother Adelard Beaudet, 1884-1990, was “The father of Schoolboy Hockey in Rhode Island”, and became the first coach of the sport at Mt. St. Charles Academy in Woonsocket in 1930. As a teacher and coach, his MSC teams won ten state championships and two national titles in thirty years. Adelard Arena in Woonsocket is named

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Archbishop Francis P. Keough

The Most Reverend Francis Patrick Keough, D.D., was the fourth Bishop of Providence. Keough was born in New Britain, Connecticut to Irish immigrant parents on December 30, 1890. After choosing the priestly vocation, he studied in St. Thomas Preparatory Seminary. Then, Bishop John J. Nilan sent him to the Seminary of St. Sulpice, at Issy,

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Rev. Charles E. Millard, Jr.

The Reverend Charles E. Millard, M.D. excelled in many walks of life–as an athlete in his youth, as a noted family physician, husband, parent, author, professor of medicine, and civic leader in his prime, and as a deacon of the Roman Catholic Church after the death of his beloved wife Mildred Lowney Millard. Charles was

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Msgr. William Michael Delaney Jr.

William Delaney was born in Providence, Rhode Island on August 10, 1903 the second of four children of William and Margaret (nee Finneran) Delaney. He grew up in South Providence graduating from the Tyler Parochial School and LaSalle Academy. Delaney then attended Georgetown University and St. Charles College, a minor seminary in Catonsville, Maryland before

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Rev. Msgr. Charles W. McConnell

The late Very Reverend Monseignor McConnell was Diocesan Director of the Rhode Island CYO for twenty-five years, where he supervised the activities and influenced the lives of more than 25,000 youth. As pastor of St. Teresa’s Parish in Providence, he served for many years as State Chaplain for the Rhode Island Chapter of the Boy

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Reverend Samuel Newman

The Reverend Samuel Newman (1602-1663) was a learned clergyman and the first prominent settler of present-day East Providence. He has not received as much acclaim as other Rhode Island founders because his village at Rumford, like the settlement of Thomas Willett at Wannamoisett, was beyond the boundaries of Rhode Island until the state annexed East

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Rev. Edward Everett Hale

Hale, Edward Everett, 1822-1909 Rev. Edward Everett Hale (1822-1909), noted author, social and economic reformer, and Unitarian minister was born in Boston. His father was a nephew of Revolutionary War hero Nathan Hale, and his maternal uncle and namesake Edward Everett was a noted orator, U.S. secretary of state, U. S. senator and congressman, governor

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C. Alexander Peloquin

Alexander Peloquin, 1918-1997, was a composer, choir director, concert organist and lituriologist. For 23 years, Peloquin served as the leader of the famed choral group which bears his name. He also served for many years as music director at the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul and choral conductor at Boston College.

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Bishop Russell J. McVinney

Bishop Russell J. McVinney (1948-1971) assumed spiritual direction of the diocese — the only Rhode Island native to hold that post. During his episcopacy the Church made impressive material gains which attest to McVinney’s administrative expertise. His tenure was a period in which Rhode Island Catholicism expanded its social role. As the immigrants began their

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Rev. James MacSparran

Dr. James MacSparran (1693-1757) was born in County Derry, Ireland, of Presbyterian parents who had migrated from Scotland. He earned a master’s degree at the University of Glasgow and then studied for the Presbyterian ministry. In 1718, he came to America from his native Ireland and served for a year in Bristol as pastor of

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Bishop Matthew Harkins

Harkins, Matthew, 1845-1921 Bishop Matthew Harkins was born in Boston, the son of Patrick and Mary Margaret (Kranich) Harkins, both immigrants from Ireland. After completing studies at Boston Latin, the future bishop attended Holy Cross College for a year, and then, in 1863, went abroad to study at the English College in Douai, France. Like

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Henry Shelton

Henry Shelton grew up in Central Falls and started his activist career as a Catholic priest. He felt warmth and achievement with worshipers at a couple of different parishes, most notably St. Michael’s Parish in South Providence, but he required greater freedom and mobility to tackle the larger issues that affected peoples’ lives. He soon

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Merrill Hassenfeld

Merill Hassenfeld, 1918-1979, was Chief Executive Officer of Hasbro Industries. He was an active leader of the Jewish people and campaign chairman of the United Way of Southern New England.He was president of the Jewish Federation of Rhode Island, a founder of the Jewish Community Center and a director of the Miriam Hospital.

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Reverend Ezra Stiles

Ezra Stiles (1727-1795) was born in North Haven, Connecticut, the son of Isaac Stiles, a Yale-educated Congregational minister, and Kezia Taylor, who died five days after his birth. Ezra entered Yale himself at age fifteen and graduated at nineteen in 1746. Three years later, he joined the ministry. As a young man, he also studied

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Rev. Anna Garlin Spencer

Anna Garlin Spencer (1851-1931) was born in Attleboro, Massachusetts but spent her formative years in Providence. Her embrace of progressive causes and her quest for social justice can be traced to her abolitionist mother and an aunt who worked with the homeless. Anna began to write for the Providence Journal at age 19 and worked

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Reverend Cornelius Philip Forster O.P.

Reverend Cornelius P. Forster was born October 27, 1919 in New York City, the third of four children of Cornelius A. Forster, Sr., a New York fireman, and Mary Catherine Collins, an accomplished singer and pianist. Father Forster was educated at Cathedral Boy’s High School where he won numerous academic awards and city-wide recognition in

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Cardinal John Dearden

Cardinal John Dearden, 1907-1988, became Archbishop of Detroit, Michigan, ministering a flock of 1,200,000 Catholics. Born John Dearden in Valley Falls, he began his education at The Holy Trinity School in Central Falls. Ordained a priest in Rome by Cardinal Francesco Marchetti Selvaggiani in 1932, he served as Bishop of Pittsburgh, and has authored national

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Bishop George Berkeley

Eighteenth-century Rhode Island’s most famous scholar was Irish clergyman George Berkeley (pronounced Barkley), an Anglican essayist and philosopher, who renovated and resided at the beautifully preserved Whitehall Farm in present-day Middletown during his eventful stay in America from 1729 to 1731. Berkeley was born in Dysart Castle in County Kilkenny, Ireland, in 1685. He was

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Mary Emma Woolley

Mary Emma Woolley, noted educator, women’s suffrage supporter, college president, feminist, and peace activist, was the first graduate of the Women’s College at Brown University (later called Pembroke) in 1894. E. Benjamin Andrews, innovative president of Brown University, had persuaded Woolley to become the first woman student at Brown. She earned her degree under the

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