Father Murphy Award

Father Murphy was ordained on February 2, 1962 after attending Holy Cross and the seminary. After receiving his doctorate in European history at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. he went on to serve at parishes throughout the Boston area. In addition, Father Murphy was also a Professor of History at Boston College and St. John’s Seminary. He also served as Chaplain for the Sisters of Charity at Mount St. Vincent’s in Wellesley for 20 years.

For more than a quarter of a century, Father Murphy served as Spiritual Director for the New England Food Foundation. A kind, caring man, Father Murphy was the very heart of the NEFF organization. His steady presence was an anchor during the most tumultuous of times, providing the membership with calm and reasoned direction when it was needed the most. The transition from the Nazareth Children’s Association to the

NEFF in the early 80’s was a challenging time and his gentle, calming influence helped make the transition the ultimate success that it was. In an ever-changing industry, Father Murphy’s presence was the one constant that the membership could depend upon. But Father Murphy was more than just the Spiritual Director, he was also our friend and an important part of our lives. When a shoulder was needed, he was there. When a word of advice was needed, he was there.

When encouragement was needed, he was there. If a member’s child were getting married or being baptized, Father Murphy would always officiate if asked. Whenever and wherever he was needed, Father Murphy was there. And for that, we came to love him and to rely on him.

Father Murphy dedicated his life to helping others. It has been said he was “first and foremost a teacher,” and he certainly was. He shared his knowledge and love of history with many students throughout the years. But more than that, Father Murphy’s entire life could be said to be a lesson in how to live one’s life as a Christian with quiet dignity, humility and great purpose.

We are all the richer for having known Father Murphy. The legacy he leaves behind will continue to inspire those whose lives he touched for many years to come. The New England Food Foundation has created the annual Rev. Frances J. Murphy Award in his honor because of his important role in the development and growth of the organization and the Cape House.

This award is given annually to a non-member who has dedicated time, provided assistance and has been instrumental in the continued success of the organization.

George Esteves 2007
JoJo Lepoer 2008
Megan Servello 2009
Marilyn Mello 2010
Deborah Kane 2011
Connie Keefe 2012
Sandy Luther 2012
Julie Esteves 2013
Donna Grady 2014
Greater Boston Food Bank 2015