Many blessings celebrated at Fiesta

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San Miguel Fiesta was a success this year by any measure. The Junior Queen, Princess and Prince contest raised an unprecedented $19,000 for the church. Twenty thousand raffle tickets were sold. The food vendors sold out of hamburgers and frito pies. Two hundred pieces of roasted corn on the cob, gone, just like that.

 

San Miguel Fiesta was a success this year by any measure. The Junior Queen, Princess and Prince contest raised an unprecedented $19,000 for the church. Twenty thousand raffle tickets were sold. The food vendors sold out of hamburgers and frito pies. Two hundred pieces of roasted corn on the cob, gone, just like that.

At Sunday morning’s filled-to-capacity Mass, Father Andy Pavlak looked back on a year of great sorrow tempered by great joy. He spoke of the sadness of laying down La Familia Sagrada Church in Lemitar, and the relief of receiving an insurance check for $375,000 to build a new church on the same site. He talked about replanting, starting over, and he talked about the progress being made in the restoration of San Miguel Church.

If Father Andy was thankful for the blessings received, there were others who were thankful for the blessings given. Carlos Carrillo is a member of Viejitos Car Club, New Mexico Chapter, and the organizer of the classic and antique car show that was a centerpiece of Saturday’s events. As the afternoon drew to a close, Father Andy gathered the club members and their families around and offered a blessing for all the people who worked on, drove and rode in the vehicles; he then walked around and blessed each car as well.

“It makes me feel good,” Carrillo said. “It’s the first time we’ve ever had that.”

Carrillo said the car show was organized on fairly short notice, and in addition to Viejitos members from all over the state, So-Low Car Club and La Familia Car Club members joined in as well.

“I told them, there’s no trophies, no entrance fee, but we’re going to have a blessing of the rides, and people came,” he said. “We even had a member of our Arizona chapter show up — that was a blessing in itself.”

One part of the annual fiesta tradition is a procession to the Plaza and back, carrying Patron Saint San Miguel and banners for each of the churches in the mission. Near the front were the Senior King and Queen Paul and Frances Cases, Jr., Junior Queen Aurelia Chavez, Junior Princess Reyna Alvarado, Junior Prince David Lerma Jr. and the rest of the junior royalty candidates. The strong voices of Toby and Ermie Jaramillo led the procession in song.

Joining the walkers were the spirits of the thousands of Socorro residents who have marched, over the centuries, on the same path, in the same procession.

 


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