Fr. Vincent Daily, who has served as the pastor of St. Gregory’s parish in Lower Mills since 2008, celebrated his final Mass at the Dorchester Avenue church last Saturday, July 28. The Mass was followed by a three-hour buffet dinner and party in his honor at Florian Hall, which drew a crowd of more than 400 people, most of them parishioners. Daily, who plays guitar, joined in with a band for a selection of Irish tunes.
Parishioners, led by Mike Skillin, offered words of praise for “Father Vin,” who was a popular and welcoming figure in the Lower Mills community over the last decade. A native of Maine, Daily told the packed hall that he had been “spoiled” by the affection that he and his family experienced from the St. Gregory’s community— and that it had not been his wish to leave. Still, he said, ten years was a good, long stretch for a pastoral assignment. Fr. Ahern, he assured his flock, would be a great fit in the parish, which includes parts of Milton, Mattapan and Dorchester.
Daily is departing to begin a new assignment on the faculty of Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston. He will be succeeded as pastor at St. Gregory’s by Fr. Jack Ahern, who has held other local assignments at Dorchester’s tri-parish (Holy Family, St. Peter and St. Teresa of Calcutta) and Roxbury’s St. Patrick.
St. Gregory parish, which had been bundled into a collaborative with St. Matthew in Dorchester and St. Angela Merici in Mattapan, will once again be a stand-alone parish under Fr. Ahern’s leadership. St. Matthew and St. Angela will remain joined with a single administrator, Father Garcia Breneville, now leading the parishes.