The… La Salette Shrine in Attleboro, MA., is once more engulfed in lights – over 400,000 of them – for the Christmas season, beginning Thanksgiving Day, with the message of "Make It Known."
Shrine director the Rev. Ted Brown, M.S., says the theme of the 2016 season comes from both Mother Mary and Jesus Christ's message to spread the word of the Gospel, making known the Good News.
"Coming off the Year of Mercy, we want to continue to emphasize Christ's message of love and compassion," Fr. Brown said. "During the Year of Mercy, perhaps we've experienced mercy ourselves, and it's now time to bring it into the world...the mercy we've received, we now want to bring into the world that needs to be touched by God's love and care."
The Festival of Lights, which draws crowds numbering into the thousands, officially runs from 5 p.m. Thanksgiving Day until January 1, 2017. While many of the popular staples will come back for another year – such as Clopper the Donkey at the life-size Nativity scene, the hot chocolate and toddy booths and the Creche Museum – a new feature will be the lighted outlines of angels at each of the 14 Stations of the Cross.
In addition, the weekends will offer a 20-minute trolley ride around the Shrine grounds to take visitors places where cars cannot go, or to give those who do not wish to walk a chance to view the sights. Admission is free and Brown believes that the Festival of Lights offers a low-cost night out for many families who want to treat their children to something special.
Lakeland, FL — Members of Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission in Wahneta, Florida, will remember their late pastor, the Rev. Norman A. Farland, M.S., as someone who met both their spiritual and physical needs.
“As a Catholic my whole life, that’s what it means to help the poor. He’s a clear example of that,” said Brenda Ramirez, 35, a Winter Haven lawyer and member of the Hispanic faith community since it was founded in the early 1980s. “He was extremely simple and so full of faith. He was comfortable with anybody and everybody. He was a member of our family.”
Fr. Farland, 77, a member of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette of the Roman Catholic Church, died at the Our Lady of Guadalupe rectory at 2150 Bomber Road, where he had served for 23 years.
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Our Community: The Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette are deeply rooted in the Apparition of Our Lady of La Salette which occurred near the hamlet of La Salette in southeastern France on Sept. 19, 1846. The Missionaries were founded in 1852 by Bp. Philbert de Bruillard, Bishop of Grenoble, France, and presently serve in some 25 countries.
Our Province: The Province of Mary, Mother of the Americas, was founded in 2000AD and is one of several provinces in the congregation. The members of this Province serve mainly in the countries of Canada, the United States and the Region of Argentina/Bolivia.
Our Mission: Our La Salette ministry of reconciliation responds to the broad vision given by Mary at La Salette as well as in response to the needs of the Church. As reconcilers, we together with the laity take seriously Mary’s mandate: “You will make (Mary’s) message known to all (her) people.”