Greetings, everyone! It is now less than a week until the beatification of Fr. Michael McGivney, and that means less than a week until our parish McGivney Festival begins! We are so excited about having this opportunity for our parish to welcome both our own parishioners and countless other pilgrims who will wish to visit the church, pray and light a candle at the tomb of Fr. McGivney (*hint hint* for you who love candles) and to partake in the other prayers, devotions, and events associated with the weekend. Among the highlights that are tentatively on the schedule for now: an all night Eucharistic Prayer Vigil from 9:00 PM Friday until early Saturday morning; live stream of the beatification Mass from Hartford on giant TV screens both in the church hall and outside on the front sidewalk of the church at 11:00 AM Saturday; a presentation on the Divine Mercy from Sr. Guadia, a nun of St. Faustina’s religious order, at 3:00 PM on Saturday; a panel discussion with several speakers reflecting on the life of Fr. McGivney at 4:15 PM Saturday; First Vespers for All Saints with preached homily at 5:30 PM Saturday; outdoor candlelight procession at 6:30 PM Saturday; a talk/testimony from the family whose little boy was miraculously healed by Fr. McGivney at 7:30 PM Saturday; a two hour (plus?) long vigil starting Saturday at 9:00 PM for young adults with Adoration, music, readings from Fr. McGivney’s life, and several speakers including Fr. Roger Landry and Sr. Gaudia, and finally an 11:30 PM candlelight All Saints Mass. The church will remain open for private prayer and visits to the tomb all Saturday night into Sunday morning, after which there will be a series of Masses throughout the day Sunday.
The schedule is still fluid in some ways, but the most up-to-date schedule can be found at the festival website, https://aleteia.org/mcgivneyfestival/. As the event draws nearer, more and more information will be added, including suggestions for where to find parking. There will also be a live stream available on the internet of the full 48 hours of the festival; we will post links to that on social media as soon as we have them.
The most exciting news is that registration for the event is now officially open! As a reminder, from 6:00 PM Friday evening (Oct. 30) until the close of the church at the end of the day on Sunday (Nov. 1), no one will be allowed in the church who has not registered. Space is limited due to COVID so we encourage you to register for the time slot(s) you wish as soon as possible.
To register to attend any of the prayers/devotions and for entry into the church at any time during the 48 straight hours of this event, click on this link: https://bit.ly/31sb93d Again, everyone must register, even our own parishioners, and even to attend things like our regularly scheduled St. Mary’s Sunday Masses.
We are thankful for all the many people who have already volunteered to assist with the event. It is not too late to volunteer! If you can help either with the lastminute preparations during the upcoming week, or help to staff a shift (as short as two hours) assisting with crowd control, hospitality, disinfecting pews and doors, etc. please, please click on the following link as soon as possible: https://bit.ly/2HiaDxV
This is going to be an amazing weekend of grace and prayer. I can’t wait to see you all there.
Fr. John Paul