PICTURES Hundreds Gather with Bishop Guy Desrochers for the Annual Cormac Pilgrimage Honoring the Grandmother of Jesus - St. Anne

 For the past 84 years pilgrims have journeyed to Cormac, Ontario, Canada to honor the grandmother of Jesus, and mother of Mary, Saint Anne. This year hundreds of people from around the Ottawa valley traveled to make the pilgrimage with Bishop Guy Desrochers of the Diocese of Pembroke as the main celebrant. Several priests sat in the hot sun to hear the confessions of the large crowd. The main Mass took place on Sunday, July 31st with Eucharistic Adoration held later in the afternoon. There was a triduum of Masses held, before the main event, with Bishop Guy providing a homily. A large group makes an annual walking pilgrimage to the event. Many people came in the hopes of a miracle for healing, a job or other necessity. In the area, there are many large families who come together with their children and witness to the love of Christ. The bishop spoke of the numerous miracles associated with the devotion to Saint Anne who is the patroness of Canada.The History of the Pilgrimage to St. Ann’s: 
 In 1937, bishop C.L. Nelligan, announced to Father J.N. George, his approval of a Shrine to St. Ann in Cormac, as it was centrally located in the diocese. On Tuesday, July 26, 1938, the Feast of St. Ann, the first Pilgrimage was held at St. Ann’s, Cormac. Natural stone was used for the archway with a wooden platform for the alter. The blessing of the Shrine took place on July 16, 1939, at 3 pm by Bishop Nelligan. After World War II, the number of Pilgrims increase from 4,000 to 10,000 between 1946 and 1949. There was a Triduum, started with morning Mass, evening Benediction and a Sermon. Anointing with Holy Oil is administered at one of the Triduum Masses giving strength and hope to the Pilgrims as they journey home. Religious Articles are sold and a lunch of barbecued hot- dogs, hamburgers and ice cream are served. Pilgrims may enrol in St. Ann’s Mass League and once a month a Mass is celebrated in the parish for their intentions.  The words prophesied by Reverend James McCormac in 1891, as the cemetery was moved from the Opeongo Road to its present site, “there will be a larger procession of the living to this center than the dead we are interring today”, are fulfilled by our Pilgrimages. These words were probably related to his firm belief, that the devotion to St. Ann would bring large crowds of people to Cormac. Father Grant Neville once said, “the greatest miracle of all, is the faith of the people”.
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