A very different St. Anthony Feast day

A very different St. Anthony Feast day

Masks in place, Fr. Mark Soehner and Br. Jerry Beetz offer St. Anthony Bread on the Feast of St. Anthony of Padua.

A virtual feast

Br. Chris Meyer played an integral role in the day's festivities.

This year’s Feast of St. Anthony was anything but typical here at the St. Anthony Shrine. We normally have hundreds of people visit the Shrine for the feast day celebration, but due to Covid this year, we only had 52 people for the Mass and 42 for the benediction (not including staff and friars). Every other pew was taped off for social distancing. Masked friars were working cameras and technical equipment.

woman lighting candle

Social distancing didn't stop devotion to St. Anthony

It was not typical, but the good news is that more people joined us virtually than ever before! We’ve had thousands of people view the video from around the world—including Ireland, Australia, Philippines, Asia, Germany, England, Mexico, the United States, and more. All this from our little part of the world in Cincinnati, Ohio!

This was our first time doing anything like this. I’ll be the first to admit that technology is not my strong point, but things went really well thanks to Br. Chris Meyer, OFM, who played an integral role in the planning from day one and said, “yes” we can do that. We had the live Mass, some friar interactions, and the novena service. It was a total of three hours online.

Family praying together before the relic of St. Anthony.

Things went so well that people started asking if we could keep doing the novena live each Tuesday because they are still not comfortable going out. Once again, Br. Chris said “yes,” and the novena is now live every Tuesday from the Shrine at 2:30 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time). You can even set yourself a reminder to watch. The next novena is on Tuesday, July 14. Watch it here and set your reminder now.  You can set reminders for future novenas on our Youtube, We Are Franciscans, home page.

If you missed the St. Anthony Feast Day video and would like to watch it, click here.

We hope you will join us!
Colleen Cushard

More photos of the Feast Day on our Flickr album.


Posted in: Prayer, Saint Anthony