Our Lady of Good Voyage in the seaport; Our Lady of the Railways at South Station
The airport chapel is just one of several workmen’s chapels Archbishop Cushing built across the city in the 1950s and 1960s.
Our Lady of Good Voyage in the port is another example opened on the Boston Fish Pier on December 7, 1952. According to a Boston Globe article at the time, the chapel was “intended for the special use of seamen and waterfront workers, including personnel at the Army Base, Commonwealth Pier and warehouses in the area.” A statue of Our Lady of Good Voyages stood in front of the chapel with a ship in her arms and mass was held regularly there for many years. In the early 1980s Rev. Walter J. Martin SJ became the Catholic chaplain for Boston’s waterfront. He held a Saturday midnight mass at the chapel for night workers and special masses for fishermen, police, and other groups. This chapel was relocated in 2016 when John B. Hynes III built a 22 story-office building and built a new chapel on the corner of Seaport Boulevard and Sleeper Street.
Unknown to many younger Bostonians, Our Lady of the Railways opened at South Station in 1955. It was the nation’s first railroad station chapel, located in an air-conditioned space formerly used as a movie theater. Father Chris Griffin was the longtime chaplain. Annual masses for journalists were held at the chapel in addition to daily and weekly masses. A reunion was held in 1959 for commuters who had met through the chapel which closed in September of 1972 when South Station was renovated and expanded.
Historical photos and documents shared courtsey of the Archdiocese of Boston Archives