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May 23, 2006 > Holy Spirit Parish celebrates 120 Years

Holy Spirit Parish celebrates 120 Years

by Michael Cordeniz

On Saturday and Sunday, June 3 and 4, Holy Spirit Parish in Fremont, will celebrate its 120th anniversary with its traditional Holy Spirit Festival. The Festival was first celebrated May 29, 1887, Pentecost Sunday, in thanksgiving of the parish's first year and in honor of its namesake. The Holy Spirit Festival was very familiar to the Portuguese immigrant families that settled in the area. It was a traditional celebration, especially of those who had come from the Azores Islands.

Legend has it that Queen Isabel prayed to the Holy Spirit, in order to relieve Portugal from a famine. Her supplications were answered. Ships arrived bearing enough supplies to placate the kingdom from certain devastation. As a result, Queen Isabel had a special Mass of Thanksgiving celebrated.  People throughout the country were encouraged to attend. As an act of humility, the Queen selected a peasant from the assembly, and had them symbolically crowned and handed the royal scepter.

Preceding the festival, will be a Novena, which begins on Friday, May 26, through Saturday, June 3. All services will be at 7 p.m. in the Governor House chapel.

The festivities will commence on Saturday, June 3, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. with international food booths, live entertainment, poker booth, sports games, games of chance, a raffle and "Rat Race" will be featured. There will be a Prayer of Dedication for the new religious education center.

On Sunday, June 4, booths will be open at 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and raffle winners will be announced then. Breakfast will be available at 7:30 a.m. The day will include a procession starting at 11 a.m., part of whose course will proceed down Fremont Blvd. to the entrance of the church. A solemn High Mass at 12:30 p.m. will be celebrated, culminating with the crowning of Danielle Goularte as Holy Spirit Festival Queen.

For more information please visit or call (510) 797-1660. Note: If your browser has problems reaching the website, we found that going to the school website and clicking the Holy Spirit Church button works.

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