26 March 2007

The patronal feast

Annunciation Parish in Shumway attached to my parish and, given that today is their patronal feast, we will celebrate this day in a special way.

This delightful parish has its beginnings in 1870 when the Franciscans first came to celebrate Mass in the area. The parish was founded as a mission in 1879 with twenty-six families. The current church (I hope to get pictures later today) was built in 1955. In 1958 the Bishop established the mission as a parish. In 2001, the parish was placed under the care of the Pastor of St. Anthony of Padua. As his vicar, I am very happy to assist him in the care of these souls. It is no secret that I have dreams of becoming the pastor of Shumway some day, although the Bishop says to me, with a smile on his face and in a joking fashion, whenever I suggest this to him, "Forget it."

Beginning at 3:00 p.m., the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed for adoration. The Mass will be celebrated at 6:00 p.m., followed by a catered dinner with fun and goofy games for all ages.

I have been looking forward to this evening for several weeks now. Apparently, I am not the only one. As of last Monday evening, ninety-eight people had already signed up for the dinner, out of a total parish population of 320! This is a great little parish, faithful and dedicated. This is the same parish that has some sixty people coming to a Bible study every other night with me.

The homily for this evening's Mass will be forthcoming.


  1. Hmm, I suspect the bishop has bigger things in mind for you. Doesn't surprise me at all.
    Good picture. Della Robbia?

  2. He may, though I'd be quite happy and content with Shumway.

    The image is indeed a Della Robbia. It is one of the ones on Mount LaVerna, where holy father Francis received the stigmata. I saw it when I was in college on pilgrimage to Assisi and have loved it ever since.

    One day I shall return to that holy mountain, and I pray that day will be soon...