Shrine of St Joseph Celebrates Memorial Day with a Procession

Lowell, MA

By Rebecca A. Duda, Ed. D.

Fr. Mike Amesse, OMI, holds the Monstrance in anticipation of leading the procession with two young helpers at his feet

The weekend was “memorable” in more ways than one. Straddling the long holiday weekend was the Shrine’s annual “40 Hours” devotion which focuses on the Lord’s Eucharistic presence in our midst. It featured daily Adoration periods interspersed with celebrations of the Eucharist and incorporating Prayer Services with reflections on the richness of the Lord’s Sacramental presence “I will not leave you orphans… I will be with you until the end of the age.”

Immaculate Conception

The Devotion culminated with a Eucharistic Procession to the Immaculate Conception church with stops at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium where prayers were offered for America’s fallen heroes; on the return, prayers were offered at the Bridge Club in support of the folks heroically working their recovery programs. The devotion ended with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament upon returning to the Shrine.

“May Crowning”

The closing ceremony also featured a “May Crowning” of a Lourdes image of our Blessed Mother – a fitting homage to the Theotokos, the first among us to welcome the Lord – the very “First Communion” occurred at the Annunciation when she enveloped the Lord in her very being, to be thereby transformed into a vessel of divinity – “capax Dei” – the vocation of every Christian in the world – so empowered to continue Jesus’ mission of transforming the world by ushering-in the Kingdom.

A busy day ends with a Jubilee Dinner for local priests including Oblate Fathers Stephen Conserva and Gene Tremblay

In the midst of all this, the Shrine hosted a holiday gathering of priests from the area sponsored by Regional Bishop Robert Hennessey – some 50 men enjoyed a catered, sit-down meal especially honoring those celebrating silver and golden Jubilees of their ordinations – 2 Shrine Oblate priests were among the Golden Jubilarians: Fr. Stephen Conserva and Fr. Gene Tremblay.

The procession was captured on video and you may view it on YouTube by clicking on the arrow below