Serra Club of Saginaw Ready to Celebrate Pope Francis’ Canonization of First Hispanic
American Saint, Junípero Serra
WHAT: Serra Club Will Gather to Watch Canonization of Junípero Serra
WHEN: 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 23
WHERE: Diocesan Center For Ministry, 5802 Weiss St., Saginaw
SAGINAW – When Pope Francis canonizes Blessed Junípero Serra in the presence of 25,000 people on Wednesday, Sept. 23, in Washington, D.C., there will be a smaller – but no less devout – gathering of mid-Michigan Catholics cheering him on.
Members of the Serra Club of Saginaw, which is named after Blessed Junípero Serra, will gather from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Diocese of Saginaw’s Center for Ministry, 5802 Weiss St., Saginaw, to watch Serra’s history-making canonization, which will be televised live on EWTN, on Time Warner Cable’s Papal Visit Channel, at www.usccb.org/live and www.ewtn.com/papaltravels/america/.
Blessed Serra, an 18th-century Spanish Franciscan friar, founded the first Catholic missions in California and will become the first Hispanic American saint. “We never imagined that Blessed Junípero Serra would be considered for sainthood in our lifetimes,” said Mary Catherine Siers, a Serra Club of Saginaw member. “But he did so much to bring the Catholic faith to America, and it is very much deserved.”
The Serra Club of Saginaw was established in 1951. Its mission and that of Serra International is to foster and promote vocations to the priesthood and religious life through prayer, awareness and support. The Saginaw club hosts several fundraisers annually to support the education of local seminarians.
Pope Francis will celebrate the canonization Mass in Spanish at 4:15 p.m. Wednesday at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in the nation’s capital. Blessed Serra was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1988.
“We are very excited to watch the canonization of Blessed Junípero Serra. He was really an ordinary man who did extraordinary things,” Siers said. More information about the Serra Club of Saginaw is available at saginawserra.org