Thousands of pilgrims persevered through warm days and periods of rain to celebrate the Annual Novena to Our Lady of Consolation at the Basilica and National Shrine in Carey, Ohio.
On Tuesday evening, August 14, a candlelight procession followed the statue of Our Lady of Consolation to Shrine Park where thousands of people attended an outdoor Mass for the Vigil of the Feast of the Assumption of Mary into Heaven. Fr. Jim Kent, OFM Conv. presided at the liturgy, and Fr. Timothy Kulbicki, OFM Conv., who preached this year's Novena, gave the homily.
Pilgrims from many different nationalities traveled to Carey for the Novena. Masses were said in several different languages and rites.
41 Conventual Franciscan Friars from across the United States, as well as from India, Ireland, Australia, and Africa, celebrated the Eucharist, joined in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and provided blessings for the pilgrims and their religious articles. Also helping with the event were many wonderful lay volunteers.
During the nine days, and especially after the vigil Mass lateTuesday night into Wednesday early morning, the Friars were welcomed and fed by the pilgrims who shared stories of their faith and devotion, and the delicious cuisine of their native countries.
This year marks 100 years of Conventual Franciscan ministry at the Shrine. The Centennial celebration will continue in September with a visit by the Minister General of the Conventual Franciscans.