We left vey early Saturday morning with the intention of making their 9 am Low Mass. No such luck. Rain and then my need for a road side nap slowed us down. Arrived at friends’ house to stay there the night, went to The Friendship House for lunch in a nearby town, then shopped for food to make Filipino dishes for the Festival, went home to cook, enjoyed a backyard fire and the Fall weather, then take out Mexican before getting to bed.
Sunday was ecstatic, full of energy. There must’ve been more than 1,500 people for the Feast Day Solemn High Mass, after which a huge, long procession formed, led by priests, acolytes, and also volunteers leading the rosary and hymns through the streets of St. Mary’s. It was like a Spiritual Booster shot to be united in prayer with so many Catholics who believe and practice the Faith as we do.
After the procession, the people gather for hours of recreation, entertainment, and food in the large, picturesque church/school square, lined by many tables each representing a different Catholic culture. My wife being Filipino, we brought homemade sticky rice and macaroni fruit salad. I enjoyed dishing out pieces of mahal blanca, a coconut corn custard.
Even ran into several old friends and acquaintances who hail from Tulsa, as well as the former infamous Tulsa chaplain Fr. Kenneth Novak. Met some new friends, including a Filipino SSPX Sister, and a retired academy teacher who came up to us engaging us in a long conversation.
It was definitely a festive, relaxing, and holy outing.