An Evangelical College and An Oblate Parish

Georgetown, MA

St. Mary’s in Georgetown, MA

By Harry Winter, OMI

Gordon College, Wenham, MA has recently demonstrated profound influence on St. Mary’s Church, Georgetown, MA.  Fathers Mwamba O.M.I. and I recently received a request from one of our families who has a 28-year-old son with severe cerebral palsy.  The family in the past had been able to get students from Gordon who are trained in helping the ill, to provide assistance with their son.  Now the family wanted to apply for a personal attendant from Gordon to help with their son, and they needed a letter of reference from our parish.  We quickly answered their request.

Andrew Walker

On February 29, Gordon invited all the “Faith Leaders” of northeastern MA to a “Gathering,” at which Rev. Dr. J.R. Briggs, of Kairos University, led a workshop from 10 am to 2 pm “Faith in a Rising Generation:  a needed conversation.”  To my surprise, I was the only Catholic to attend, among the 60 who showed up.

On the first Thursday of March, the speaker at the Senior Center in Georgetown’s monthly Men’s Breakfast was Andrew Walker, director of Gordon College’s Center for Balance, Mobility and Wellness.  He explained especially how to keep seniors from falling. I quickly learned that at least one of our parishioners, a lector at Mass, had been sent by her physician to their facility and found it very helpful.

The college students who served us lunch and assisted in the presentations were a delight to be with.  Their enthusiasm was contagious to all the Faith Leaders.

I went because one of the young woman parishioners of St. Mary’s told me that she had attended Gordon as a non-practicing Catholic and discovered her Catholic faith there.  Several other parishioners told me of the influence of Gordon on their lives.

For members of the Oblate Family interested in Evangelization and Christian Unity, the Evangelical Movement is growing all over the USA.  Fuller Theological, Pasadena, CA; Oral Roberts University, OK; Wheaton College, IL, and Houghton College, NY are the most famous.  But for a sophisticated and complex outreach, Gordon is very impressive.

Let us remember that the late Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I. was one of the Catholic leaders to work with Evangelicals to write “Evangelicals and Catholics Together for Mission,” back in 1994. The convergence of Evangelicals and Catholics which that 1994 statement began could not have succeeded without the 1967 emergence of the Catholic Charismatic Movement, which Oblates were quick to notice and promote. Click here to see my article: Oblates and the Charismatic Renewal, Nov. 15, 2017

Our province website “Mission-Unity-Dialogue” ( welcomes more information about this convergence, click on the tab Five Ways Fellowship, scroll down to the book Dividing or Strengthening, ch. 2.