Sunday, 27 June 2010

St. Peter’s Centenary Celebrations

This year marks the centenary of the church I attended when growing up.  It’s the church where I and all my siblings were baptized, made our First Confession, First Holy Communion, were Confirmed and nearly all were married.  My parents were married there too.  As schoolchildren we would all take part in the annual Procession of Faith through the streets of Middleton. I could go on, suffice it to say that St. Peter’s played a big part in my younger years.  Today was a big celebration to mark the event.  The day started with mass said by the bishop of the diocese and then a procession from church through the streets of Middleton to St. Peter’s  school.  My old school.

So great was my desire to be there, in particular to watch the procession, that I was there a good hour before anything happened. I couldn’t believe it, unfortunately I’m one of those people who is usually unable to be anywhere on time!  I had got Caroline and Charlie with me and Victoria and her family followed very soon after.  My sister, Jean, and her two girls were already there.  Eager beavers to say the least.

DSC_4339 We still have family connections to St. Peter’s.  My sister’s children and grandchildren attend it now. This is my sister’s grandson, an altar boy and choirboy, leading the procession carrying the cross.  My dad, his great-granddad would have been so proud of him.

DSC_4343The statue of St. Peter being carried aloft by the men of the parish.

DSC_4350 A Scottish pipe band.  They were great and immaculately turned out.

DSC_4352In days gone by my older brother was one of the bearers of this banner or one just like it.

DSC_4353Little girls in their First Holy Communion dresses.

02-26-2008-21-25-33-390 copy 4_edited-2Flash back to the late 1950s.  That’s me (in front) and my sisters and brother ready to walk in the annual parish procession.  It was a big thing in the school calendar and everybody would want to watch  “the scholars walking”.  Indeed the whole route would be lined with what seemed like millions of people watching us.  We girls had to carry our rosary beads and walk with our hands joined as if in prayer all the way round. Today’s procession was a strong reminder of how it used to be and brought a lump to my throat remembering those processions of our schooldays.

The school grounds were given over to a “Garden Party” and there was tons of stuff to keep all ages entertained. 

DSC_4378I loved the Irish Dancers.  They were very good and put on a great display for an appreciative crowd.

DSC_4383These three ladies gave an unusual performance of an Irish Dance using brushes as props.  Their t-shirts said  “eejit” on the front and “Daft as a Brush” on the back. They were really good too. Don't worry about the Fire Brigade in the background, they were there as an attraction not for an emergency.

DSC_4376 A small band played traditional Irish music.

DSC_4364Refreshments in the full heat of the sun.  The seats in the shade of the marquees were all taken.

St. Peter’s RC Church and school did themselves proud today.  The whole event couldn’t have been better. I am so glad we all went and so glad the sun shone down on the proceedings, even if it was a bit too hot at times.  I’ll bet a lot of prayers were offered up for that sunshine!

DSC_4399DSC_4410Once back at home, after I had dropped Caroline and a tired Charlie back at their house, Victoria and the boys joined me in the garden.  The boys cooled off with some water fun.  Later, George read a story and Nicholas listened. 

Meanwhile the men were glued to one television or another watching England play in the World Cup.  In fact that was the only cloud on the horizon today.  England got knocked out by Germany 4-1.  Not good, but hey, worse things happen at sea!


I’m linking to the wonderful Outdoor Wednesday at  Why not hop over and have a look at all the other OW posts. It’s a great way of seeing how other people live.


Anonymous said...

>what a beautiful commentary. i am glad you enjoyed it we all did too.i know missie and george had a good time and felt grown up going round the fair. i too think my grandad and grandma would of been very proud of all there great grandchildren but would of loved to see jordan carrying that cross.xx lindsey

Linda said...

What a wonderful day...I loved your post. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Made me want to cry too. Love Victoria xx

MomMom said...

Loved your post---so interesting and informative. Thanks for sharing and thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a commment. Linda--- AKA MomMom

Love Bears All Things said...

I loved this informative and like being there for the celebration..Love the bagpipers.
Mama Bear