WAKAW, Sask. — A mosaic blend of multicultural pilgrims united in a Day of Worship in Honour of St. Theresa at Wakaw Roman Catholic Church on June 11.
The hospitality table was set up at the entrance of the church. Committee members greeted the pilgrims and outlined the day’s agenda. The Way of the Cross outdoor procession set the tone for the day.
A talk presented by Rev. Millan Sajonas focused on discipleship. He was followed by Prince Albert Bishop Albert Thévenot, M.Afr., who held a red rose and spoke of how it reflects the symbol of love. The bishop ended his talk describing his recent his visit to Rome and his visit with Pope Francis.
Following the presentations, a buffet luncheon was enjoyed by all in the downstairs hall. Some enjoyed fellowship while others browsed in the religious article store. Others had the opportunity for the sacrament of reconciliation, while still others continued their private devotions.
More pilgrims from outlying parishes arrived in time to participate in the afternoon celebrations. The crowd gathered at the outdoor Altar on the Mound, where singing birds harmoniously blended with the choir.
The eucharist was celebrated by Thévenot, who concelebrated with parish priest Rev. Phong Tran and visiting priests Maurice Fiolleau, Ramell Macapalla, Phin Do and Colin Roy. Fourth degree Knights of Columbus Joe Habetler and Joe MacLeod stood honour guard. MC Allan Burynuik welcomed all present and ably directed the afternoon program.
Those at the mass were blessed to witness three young confirmands — Allison Frie, Tanner Fiddler and Preston Gaudet — receive the sacrament of confirmation.
An impressive procession of roses — symbolic of a love offering in gratitude to St. Theresa, for her example to the world — made its way to the altar. The participants in the procession were seven Filipino pilgrims from the Prince Albert diocese who faithfully return each year.
Following the mass, pilgrims came forward to receive healing prayers and a blessing from the bishop and priests. There were some in wheelchairs and walkers and others in need of healing. Love, peace and joy permeated the atmosphere as younger family members assisted the elderly to go forward to receive the prayers. This was followed by the exposition of the blessed sacrament and then a line of procession of pilgrims back into the church for adoration.
Pilgrims were invited to partake of refreshments in the auditorium, where more fellowship concluded the day. The feast day of St. Theresa will be held on Oct. 1, and next year’s pilgrimage — the 94th — will be held on June 10, 2018.