Thousands flock to Shrine of St. Ann

CORMAC – Pilgrims from across the diocese and beyond visited the Shrine of St. Ann in Cormac on July 26 for the 77th annual mass.

Like year’s prior, the 11 a.m. mass began with St. Ann’s banner being carried from the church to the shrine. Bardella Kelly and Daryl Schroeder carried the banner, which led a procession consisting of Knights of Columbus members, altar servers, priests and Bishop Michael Mulhall.

Members of the Diocesan Community Choir led the procession in song, beginning with the hymn To Kneel at Thine Altar. The choir consists of choir members and instrumentalists from local parishes.

When everyone was seated at the shrine, Father John Lacey, the pastor in Eganville and Cormac, thanked everyone who helped with the organization of the pilgrimage. He also asked for patience during communion, where, despite the excessive heat that day, a handful of priests would stand amongst the crowd and distribute the host to thousands of pilgrims.

The shrine, which pays devotion to the Grandmother of Jesus, was erected in the 1930s in Cormac because the church was centrally situated in the diocese. Over the years, people from Eastern Ontario and Western Quebec gather at the shrine for the annual outdoor pilgrimage. 

Get your July 29, 2015 edition of The Valley Gazette to read the full story.