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This basilica is dedicated to St. Joseph. (photo: Courtesy of Tanya Connor)

Travel to Webster, Massachusetts, to pray at a beautiful church dedicated to the earthly father of Jesus.

By Joseph Pronechen, EWTN News, December 4, 2021

Joseph PronechenSt. Joseph Basilica in Webster, Massachusetts, the third named as one of New England’s half-dozen basilicas, is one of the most beautiful of churches honoring the greatest saint in heaven after Mary, his holy spouse. Yet it keeps a rather humble profile, as did St. Joseph.

Webster is located midway between the state’s two largest cities — Boston and Springfield. Once a large mill town bustling with shoe factories, it might not seem the likeliest place for a basilica to be found. But it prompts the faihful to recall that Nazareth was a humble village, too.

The striking brick basilica stands on a residential hillside covered with modest houses. Its twin towers and spires stretch high above the surrounding neighborhood. St. Joseph, in statue form, watches over this humble scene from the high peak in the central gable. Imagine what a blessing it was for the many thousands of early immigrant-parishioners working in the nearby mills to live in these houses in the shadow of this church.

It was the humble Polish immigrants who established this church and parish in 1887, the first Polish-American church in New England. The growing congregation soon meant a larger church had to be planned. In 1912, the present structure was built by Msgr. Anthony Cyran; decades later, in 1990, it underwent a truly magnificent renovation under the guidance of Msgr. Anthony Czarnecki. …

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