Fr. Melvin C. Blanchette, PSS, Receives Papal Honor

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Fr. Melvin “Mel” C. Blanchette, PSS, PhD, was awarded the Pro Ecclesia Et Pontifice Cross on September 23, 2023, by Archbishop William E. Lori at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen in Baltimore.

Throughout decades of priestly ministry to the Church, Fr. Blanchette, a member of the Society of the Priests of St. Sulpice since 1972, is a well-known author, psychologist, and counselor. Fr. Blanchette positively affected and strengthened the ongoing human and spiritual formation of countless priests, religious, and seminarians throughout the United States and Canada.

Whether ministering to seminarians, priests and religious as a seminary formator, spiritual director, mentor, or retreat director, and later as the rector of Theological College, the National Seminary at The Catholic University of America (2007–2011), Fr. Blanchette has been a positive influence on many lives.

Described as a deeply dedicated and thoughtful priest, Fr. Mel commented, “When Archbishop Lori called me with the news, I was deeply honored and humbled to learn that I was chosen by the Holy Father to receive this award. It is such a wonderful feeling to receive this recognition for serving the Holy Father and the Church.”

Fr. Daniel F. Moore, PSS, Provincial, added, “We offer our heartiest congratulations to our confrere as a recipient of the Cross Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice medal. We are grateful for Mel’s faithful ministry in initial and ongoing formation and for his dedication to the Society and to the Church. Fr. Moore accompanied Fr. Blanchette at the dinner hosted by Archbishop Lori for the papal honorees at his residence the Friday evening prior the presentation of honors, which were conferred the following morning at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen.