The Bishop Feehan community surrounded senior AJ Quetta, his family and teammates with prayer and support on Friday, three days after AJ suffered a serious neck injury during a Feehan hockey game. AJ's story has captured the attention of an entire region — especially the New England hockey community led by the Boston Bruins — but Friday at Feehan was about AJ and his family and school community coming together in support.
At 1:00pm, all of Feehan joined in prayer. With AJ's teammates gathered in the school auditorium, 500 students, teachers and staff logging in from their classrooms, and 500 students logging in from home, Feehan chaplain Fr. Jack Schrader and Feehan faculty member Deacon Joe McGinley led a poignant prayer service. Together we asked for God's blessing for AJ. Together we asked for Mary's intercession. We prayed for strength and understanding.
We are sharing Deacon Joe's homily here. Thank you, Deacon Joe, for so powerfully providing the words our community needed (and still needs):
Later Friday, our hockey team got back to playing hockey, again with AJ in our hearts and at the front of our minds. The New England Sports Village shut down its entire facility for the night (a Friday night at the height of hockey season — thank you, NESV!) so that game could be just about AJ, our boys and their families. Our league partners from Austin Prep provided the competition (and joined in our prayers) on a night that was far more about the joy of playing than about the final score (Austin Prep 5-2).
The evening began with AJ's sisters, Ella and Elyse, sharing the thanks of the Quetta family with our Feehan hockey family, followed by a prayer service by Feehan hockey mom and theology teacher Kerry Payson and Deacon Joe. AJ's Feehan jersey and a custom Boston Bruins (Quetta #10) hung from glass next to the Feehan bench throughout the game.
And AJ was watching the live stream with Mrs. Quetta texting his reactions throughout the game. From the texts it was clear that AJ supported his teammates and, well, still hates to lose.
The game also marked the debut of "AJ's Army". An AJ's Army banner hung over the Feehan bench, and nearly every fan in the rink donned AJ's Army shirts and #10 pins provided by team families. Feehan's skaters had an AJ's Army decal on their helmets. All of these items will be available to the wider public in coming days in support of AJ.
It's worth closing this post with a mention of the amazing support for AJ from beyond the Feehan walls. More than 10,000 people, families and hockey teams have contributed more than $600,000 so far to a GoFundMe page set up for AJ and his family. And more support is welcome and much needed. You can give by clicking here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-pay-for-ajs-hospital-surgeries
The Feehan Family remains strong. God Bless, AJ!