News & Blog

April 2014 Newsletter



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Save the Date

May 9 – Presentation before the Senior College at USM Lewiston-Auburn.

May 11 – FP Icon Blessing at St. Andrews Church, Newcastle, ME.

May 13 – FP Feast Day at the Parish of St. Monica and St. James in Washington, DC.

June 29 – Perkins Homestead Tour.

July 2 – Newcastle Historical Society presents “Frances Perkins in the Twin Villages”.

July 17 – Inaugural Betta MacCarthy Ehrenfeld Public Policy Forum

July 20 – Perkins Homestead Tour.

August 12 – “Frances Perkins: Maine’s New Deal Pioneer” Event with the College of the Atlantic on Mount Desert Island.

August 14 – Sixth Annual Garden Party and Award Ceremony.

September 7 – Perkins Homestead Tour.

In the News

Please click on the links to read more:

The May issue of The Living Church featuring “The Saint Behind the New Deal”, an article on Frances Perkins and her faith.

What We Can Learn From FDR by Harvey Kaye (Moyers and Company)

Invisible Social Security Cuts (Campaign for America’s Future)

The President expands equal pay for women (

Restoring Minimum Wage Would Strengthen Social Security (Huffington Post)

Marking the 103rd anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire (Huffington Post)

Mayor de Blasio Signs Paid Sick Leave Bill into Law in New York City (


The mission of the Frances Perkins Center is to fulfill the legacy of Frances Perkins, principal architect of the New Deal, by continuing her work for social and economic justice and preserving for future generations her nationally significant family homestead.
Dear Friends:

We would like to call attention to two events in May celebrating Frances Perkins’ Feast Day, taking place in the two churches where she was a celebrant.  On Sunday, May 11 at St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Newcastle, an icon of Frances Perkins will be donated and blessed at church services that morning.  At her church in Washington, DC, the Parish of St. Monica and St. James, there will be a High Mass on Tuesday, May 13 for her Feast Day as Public Servant and Prophetic Witness.

The Episcopal Church’s description for the Perkins Feast Day observes that she depended on “her faith, her life of prayer, and the guidance of her church for the support she needed to assist the United States and its leadership to face the enormous problems” then challenging the country.  Rev. Charles Hoffacker, Frances Perkins Center board member and interim rector at the St. Monica and St. James Episcopal Church, has noted that while Secretary of Labor, she would make a monthly retreat at an Episcopal convent in Maryland. You can click here to read Rev. Hoffacker’s article entitled “The Saint Behind the New Deal” in the May issue of The Living Church magazine.

On May 16, 2010, St. Andrews held its first commemoration of Frances Perkins with a presentation by religion and ethics scholar Donn Mitchell, “Frances Perkins: Heart and Soul of the New Deal.”  He explored the ways her work was dependent on her faith and on the teachings of the Anglican tradition and its commitment to social justice. He noted that her Episcopalianism encompassed the needs of all people in both their spiritual and secular lives. She was concerned about the moral welfare and moral improvement of all people, the whole community, whether seen locally or nationally.

Join us in celebrating Frances Perkins’ Feast Day on May 11 and 13.

Michael Chaney
Executive Director
Frances Perkins Center

Icon Blessing at St. Andrews in Newcastle, ME

On Sunday May 11th at the 8:00 AM and 10:00 AM services St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Newcastle, Maine will observe the Feast of Frances Perkins.  Frances, who is now recognized as a “Holy Woman” by the Episcopal Church, faithfully attended St. Andrew’s whenever she stayed at her family’s brick house in Newcastle.    A local retired priest, the Rev. Amelia Hagen, has recently purchased an icon of Frances and is generously donating it to St. Andrew’s.  The icon will be received and blessed at both morning services.

Frances Perkins Feast Day in Washington, DC

St. Monica and St. James Episcopal Church will offer a High Mass on Tuesday, May 13, at 7:00 PM for the Feast of Frances Perkins, Public Servant and Prophetic Witness. Labor Secretary during the Franklin Roosevelt administration, Frances Perkins was the first woman cabinet member and largely responsible for Social Security, Unemployment Insurance and the Minimum Wage. While a resident in Washington DC, she was a member of St. James, Capitol Hill (now St. Monica and St. James). Speaking at the Mass will be Tomlin Coggeshall, the grandson of Frances Perkins. A reception will follow.

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