The lakeside shrine to the Blessed Mother at St. Thomas More has ironwork that was originally between the side altars in St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary Chapel, brickwork that was done by County Mayo’s native son Rev. Msgr. William Dever and statuary imported from Leghorn, Italy. Like the parish, its history is built on the union of two great Catholic cultures—the Irish and the Italian/Sicilian—and of two institutions—the seminary and the parish.
Founding pastor and seminary professor of homiletics Father Donald Connolly celebrated the first Sunday Mass for 40 families in the seminary chapel in 1972. Father Julian Harris celebrated Mass for more than 5,000 families in the great church that was dedicated by pastor Father Francis Lechiara in 1988. The first Communion class in 1974 had 27 children; today more than 700 children and families enjoy faith formation in the religious education building established under the pastorate of Father Francis O’Loughlin.
St. Thomas More Parish has a unique media technology ministry that makes the Mass, weekly sermons and religious podcasts available to parishioners through livestreaming broadcasts. The parish also offers online prayer requests through its 24-hour prayer center and a “Profiles of Faith” portal where parishioners can share testimonies online about how God has been working in their lives. There is also a parish app that can be downloaded for parishioners to stay connected with church events, scripture reading, online giving and more.
In his letter to the parish about the technology ministry, Father Harris said, “Technology can unite us or divide us. Technology at the service of faith is a powerful tool to assist the Church in fulfilling her mission: to proclaim the good news of salvation in Christ to all the world and to shepherd God's people in the way, the truth and the life of her Lord.” The parish is committed to adapting traditional evangelization tools to reach younger generations who are well-versed in technology and social media. In this way, St. Thomas More Parish welcomes the next generation of Catholics as they seek a deeper connection with Christ.
Father Julian Harris is the current pastor, and Father Alex Vargas Hernandez is the parochial vicar.
St. Thomas More Catholic Church is located at 10935 South Military Trail Boynton Beach, FL 33436.