Our own Resident priest, Father Eugene Abbott, was featured in the Sunday bulletin during the Christmas season at the nearby Assumption Church, where he celebrates Mass several times a week. In the many weeks before Christmas, Holy Family Residents and Assumption parishioners watched as Father Abbott’s facial appearance changed. Father Stephen O’Gara, pastor of Assumption, wrote this in the church bulletin:
Why are they called mutton chops? No, not the kind you eat but the kind men wear. The following is more than you probably ever wanted to know about mutton chops:
Nineteenth century sideburns were often far more extravagant than those seen today, similar to what are now called mutton chops. Mutton chops are sideburns named for their mutton-like shape as they extend down to the corner of the mouth. This mutton-like shape gave them their name.
Many of us at Assumption Church wondered why Father Abbott, a Resident at Holy Family Residence and our beloved week-day Priest, was suddenly growing sideburns that continued down his cheeks and resulted in what are known as mutton chops. He never explained. Most of us secretly hoped he would shave them away and soon! He remained steadfast!
Finally, during the holidays, the mystery was solved for everyone. He was doing it to pose for his Christmas card! The front of the card is above. Inside is a beautiful rendition of the manger scene and Father Abbott wrote, ‘It is the season for the joyful at heart. It is time to sing “Gloria in Excelsis Deo. Our Savior is born.” I think it is a great card with a great message. So there you have it. Father Abbott as Scrooge. I must say that he is the furthest person from being Scrooge! Father Abbott is now clean-shaven and looks 10 years younger!”
We are all blessed to be a part of Father Abbott’s life and as we begin the new year, 2013, we are certain that there are no Ba-Humbugs here!