Built by Archbishop Cushing as one of a series of workmen’s chapels across the city, the Our Lady of Good Voyages Chapel was opened on the Boston Fish Pier on December 7, 1952. The first mass was offered there the same day on the vigil of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. The original brick building was marked by a modest entrance and a star-shaped, stained-glass window above the doors.
Land for this chapel was donated by Frederic G. Dumaine Jr., president of the New Haven Railroad. 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 for many years and mass was held regularly.
The chapel will soon be torn down as part of a $10 million development deal with the Archdiocese of Boston. John B. Hynes III, who runs Boston Global Investors and is erecting a 22-story office tower in the adjacent lot, will demolish the old chapel and build a new one at the corner of Seaport Boulevard and Sleeper Street at the foot of the Evelyn Moakley Bridge. The architects for the new building are Cram and Ferguson.of Concord, MA, an established firm with extensive ecclesiastical experience. Many objects and symbols from the old chapel will be moved including a statue of Mary holding baby Jesus and a three-masted ship that long sat on the altar.