Most Precious Blood (Hyde Park)

History of MPB Parish

What is the Most Precious Blood?

Blood is a symbol of covenantal life, a sign of relationship and bond. Genesis relates that after the Flood, God allowed humans to use the flesh of animals as food except for "meat with its lifeblood in it," because God wished to make every creature accountable for each other's blood. In the Law of Moses, while the flesh of a sacrifice would be consumed, the blood was poured upon the altar or sprinkled upon the Ark of the Covenant, making it sacred by contact with the divine. These sacrifices culminated on the Cross with the death of Jesus; He allowed His death to be an offering to the Father for all the sins of the world, past, present and future. Because Jesus is where the human and the divine meet, His Blood is the very Blood of God. Its price is beyond measure. Each drop of it is "most precious." Now through the Mass, that Blood is given back to us through the Eucharistic bread and wine, to make us sacred through this mystical contact with the divine - and to remind us that we are always accountable for the Blood of the Lord.

Devotion to the Most Precious Blood is also, in a way, a devotion to the Blessed Mother; as Jesus took flesh and was born from Mary, she is the source of Blood of God. She is the Ark of the New Covenant, made sacred by her contact with the  Presence that both overshadowed her and grew inside her. For the sake of the merits of the Blood that redeemed the world, she was made Immaculate by God.

For information on Saint Gaspar del Bufalo, the missionary through whom this devotion spread throughout the Church, click here.

History of Most Precious Blood Parish

MPB's parish family has been just as stalwart as the noble sanctuary it calls home. Over the decades, parishioners have served God and neighbor graciously according to their own station, coming together in groups such as the long-standing Holy Name Society, the local chapters of the Knights of Columbus and St. Vincent dePaul Society, and more recently the Haitian Prayer Group - or even individually, warmly greeting one another and sharing their joy with friends and visitors. Through it all, our priests have led us as faithful stewards and energetic teachers of the Gospel, loving fathers of a family that has not forgotten them; the great windows inside the church are dedicated to former pastors, and the memory of our friend and lifelong Hyde Parker Msgr. Day still brings many stories and many smiles. 

The sites of Most Precious Blood’s "satellite" schoolhouses in Readville and on Fairmount Hill gave rise to the locations of two new parishes: St. Anne in 1918 and St. Pius X (Milton) in 1954.  It is fitting, therefore, that "Mother" MPB is proud to be working together with her "children" again, as part of the Blue Hills Collaborative, to serve Hyde Park's faithful and to spread the Good News. 

The Pastors of Most Precious Blood Church

  1. Rev. Richard J. Barry, 1880-1888 
  2. Rt. Rev. Msgr. James J. Chittick, 1888-1919 
  3. Rev. James F. Stanton, 1919-1923 
  4. Rev. Henry T. Grady, 1923-1929
  5. Rt. Rev. Msgr. Edward F. Crowley, 1929-1953 
  6. Rt. Rev. Msgr. Edmund A. Moran, 1953-1966 
  7. Most Rev. Lawrence J. Riley, 1966-1990 
  8. Rev. James D. Lyons, 1990-1996 
  9. Rev. Peter P. Nolan, C.S.Sp., 1997-2014 
  10. Rev. Ronald D. Coyne, 2014-Present

Timeline of Most Precious Blood Parish


  • Most Precious Blood founded as parish in February
  • Fr. Richard J. Barry appointed first pastor, arrives from West Roxbury
  • Cornerstone of church laid on July 4, Feast of Most Precious Blood that year
  • Charles Bateman hired as architect


  • Church building completed and dedicated in September
  • Total cost of the church was $85,000


  • Sisters of Charity of Nazareth establish a colony in Hyde Park
  • St. Raphael's School opens main building on Mt. Neponset, satellite building in Readville area
  • April 22, 1888 Homily by MPB's first pastor, Fr. Richard Barry
  • Fr. Barry transferred to St. Cecelia Parish in Boston Back Bay
  • Fr. Chittick appointed second pastor, arrives from St. Peter Parish in Plymouth


  • Satellite parish school opened in Corriganville area


  • Parish of St. Angela established in Mattapan (area originally served by M.P.B. Parish)


  • Original school building replaced with new building on Oak Street


  • Present-day rectory at 43 Maple Street built


  • Polish National Parish of St. Adalbert established in Sunnyside area


  • Fr. Chittick elevated to rank of Domestic Prelate (Right Reverend Monsignor)


  • Msgr. Chittick dies
  • Fr. Stanton appointed third pastor, arrives from Immaculate Conception Parish in Stoughton


  • Parish of St. Anne established in Readville area
  • Satellite parish school in Readville area becomes St. Anne's School


  • Fr. Stanton dies
  • Fr. Grady appointed fourth pastor, arrives from St. Benedict Parish in Somerville


  • Lower church renovated


  • Bernadine Home of the Little Flower Orphanage established in Sunnyside area


  • Fr. Grady dies
  • Parish administered by senior curate Fr. Houlihan


  • Fr. Crowley appointed fifth pastor, arrives from St. Bridget Parish in Maynard


  • "The Great Achievement," a passion play written by Fr. Crowley, is performed at Hyde Park High School Auditorium


  • Original convent replaced with new building


  • Parish of St. Joseph established in Rugby area


  • Fr. Crowley elevated to Domestic Prelate (Right Reverend Monsignor)


  • Columban Sisters establish a convent in Hyde Park


  • Msgr. Crowley retires
  • Msgr. Moran appointed sixth pastor, arrives from St. Peter Parish in Plymouth


  • Msgr. Moran begins renovation and restoration of the upper and lower churches
  • 168’ Spire removed
  • Parish of Pope St. Pius X established in Brush Hill area of Milton
  • Satellite parish school in Corriganville area briefly becomes St. Pius X School


  • Msgr. Crowley dies


  • Joseph P. Kennedy Building dedicated at Home of the Little Flower


  • Parish school building replaced with present-day building
  • Parish school renamed Most Precious Blood School


  • Msgr. Moran retires
  • Msgr. Riley appointed seventh pastor, arrives from St. John Seminary in Brighton


  • Msgr. Riley ordained Auxiliary Bishop of Boston


  • Cardinal Wojtyla (later Pope St. John Paul II) visits Hyde Park, offers Mass at the Kennedy Building


  • Home of the Little Flower closes
  • Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Memorial School opens


  • Columban Sisters depart


  • Bishop Riley retires
  • Fr. Lyons appointed eighth pastor, arrives from St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Danvers


  • Sisters of Charity of Nazareth depart


  • Fr. Lyons transferred to St. Mary Parish in Rowley
  • Parish administered by Fr. Keane, then Fr. Welsh


  • Fr. Nolan appointed ninth pastor, arrives from St. Teresa of Avila Parish in West Roxbury


  • Arson fire ruins lower church, causes damage to upper church


  • Lower church converted into Parish Center and daytime chapel


  • Bishop Riley dies


  • Most Precious Blood School closes; property leased eventually to Boston Preparatory Charter School


  • Convent building between church and rectory redeveloped as Riley House Apartments
  • Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Memorial School closes
  • Bernardine Franciscan Sisters depart


  • St. Joseph Parish closes and eventually absorbed by Most Precious Blood


  • Fr. Nolan appointed administrator of St. Pius X Parish


  • Fr. Ronald Coyne appointed tenth pastor
  • St. Anne Parish Readville joins MPB and St. Pius X to form Blue Hills Collaborative 


  • Planning begins on a multimillion dollar restoration of Most Precious Blood church

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