The parishioners of the cluster of Point Fortin, Cedros, La Brea and South Oropouche bade farewell to the statue of Our Lady of Fatima on October 7. Her departure culminated the 15 days of Our Lady’s enthronement at St Anthony’s RC Church, Point Fortin.
During her stay, each parish in the cluster, along with their communities, was responsible for the activities of the day chosen by them. Each day began with the Morning Prayer of the church, and included the praying of the different forms of the rosary; feature addresses by special speakers; praise and worship; and times of quiet devotion and reflection. Holy Mass, with other priests of the Vicariate assisting Fr Antony Baskar, was celebrated each evening to bring an end to the day’s activities.
The visitors consisted not only of the parishioners of the cluster, but of pilgrims from other clusters in the Archdiocese. Also present were visitors from other religious denominations who came to experience the activities.
The various communities came together as ‘Church’ working in harmony to ensure all aspects of the 15-day experience went smoothly.
The last night of Our Lady’s stay, Fr Raymond Francis concelebrated at Holy Mass. Fr Francis facilitated personal introspection, reminding all present that Mary’s ‘yes’ opened for us the way of our salvation.
He implored us to open and surrender ourselves, letting go of suppressed anger, bitterness, resentment and memories of abuse, thus allowing the healing power of God to assist us to walk confidently in the freedom of Christ. With the inspirational singing from the St Anthony’s Music Ministry throughout the Mass, the congregation was truly ministered to.
On Saturday morning, Fr Baskar celebrated the closing Mass. He urged the congregation to take cognisance of the fact that Mary’s plea a century ago is as relevant to us today and urged us to remain deeply rooted, spreading the message of faith.
Other testimonies were shared by members of the congregation and a family seeking conversion, witnessing to the influence of Our Lady in situations they faced. Many were moved to tears.
As the Sons of our Lady removed the statue to take to Our Lady of Fatima RC, Curepe, the choir continued to sing the many Marian hymns as the congregation joined in. What a blessed experience!“O Lady of Fatima……….pray for us help us today, Thou hope of the human race…….”- Juliana Valdez