The feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel is the titular feast of the Santuario la Madonnina, and therefore, is the major celebration of the year for our community here at Capannori, Lucca, Italy. The preparations began with the novena from July 07-15. On the feast day, there were two masses celebrated in the morning followed by a prayer of supplication to Our Lady of Mount Carmel at noon. The solemn celebration of the feast mass was at 6:00 p.m. preceded by a meditative praying of the rosary at 5:00 p.m. The Vicar General of the Archdiocese, Mons. Michelangelo Giannotti, presided over the festal mass, since the Archbishop Paulo Giulietti had another engagement. However, that engagement being cancelled, the archbishop expressed his wish to celebrate one of the feast masses, and the Shrine was privileged to have him for the 8:00 a.m. mass. Along with Fr Sunil Rodrigues and Dn Jignesh Solanki of our Province, the festal mass was concelebrated by the diocesan priests of the neighbouring parishes. Being the feast of the patroness of the Commune (town) of Capannori as well, the Sindaco (Mayor) Sig. Luca Menesini and Vice-Sindaco (Vice-Mayor) Sig. Matteo Francesconi, along with many of their collaborators, participated in the mass. The liturgy was enhanced with the soulful singing of the Capannori Parish Choir, and the both the Shrines, the old and the new, were filled to capacity. After the mass, the community invited the priests and the Sindaco, among others, for a meal, prepared by the UCT (Unione Carmelitana Teresiana) sisters. We are ever grateful to our friars, Fr Richard D’Souza, for celebrating the feast mass at 10:00 am, and Fr Sunil Rodrigues for celebrating the Vigil mass and making himself available for confessions. We express our deep gratitude to Dn. Jignesh Solanki who offered to assist us the whole week leading up to the feast. At the end of the mass, like a benevolent sign from heaven above, a rainbow was seen by many faithful over the Shrine. May God continue to shower our nascent community with his graces to continue his mission in this holy land.

Copyright © 2006   KG Carmelite Province, Bangalore

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