During this stop of the M.I. Initiative with Friar Jobe, when he reached Mother Cabrini Friary, Shamokin, PA, the friars there were anxious that he visit the Shrine of the Miraculous Medal at St. Catherine Labouré Parish, Harrisburg, PA. Indeed, the miraculous medal, so dear to St. Maximilian and precious to all M.I. members, was fashioned after the apparition of the Blessed Mother to the young Daughter of Charity, Catherine Labouré in Paris, France, 1830. In the apparition, as Our Lady sat in the confessor’s chair, Sister Catherine fell to her knees and placed her hands in Mary’s lap. The Blessed Mother commissioned Sister Catherine to make a medal of the apparition and promised God’s abundant blessings on all who wear the medal. After the canonization of St. Catherine Labouré in 1947, this parish became the first in the world to bear her name. In the church are one of the miraculous medals in St. Catherine’s possession at her death as well as a first class relic containing a bone fragment from her hand. Pictured at left, with Friar Jobe is Friar Tim Geiger, OFM Conv. (Parochial Vicar for all three parishes in the area), who accompanied him to the shrine. Between by Friar Jobe on the right, is the miraculous medal and on the left by Friar Tim is the first class relic.
Also while Friar Jobe was visiting with our friars in Shamokin, PA, on Monday November 22, 20211, our friars serving in the Shamokin area hosted an Interfaith Prayer Service marking the 80th Anniversary of the martyrdom of St. Maximillian Kolbe. A new statue of Kolbe (at right) in the church of Our Lady of Hope (Coal Township, PA) was dedicated during the service and Miraculous Medals were given to all who attended. Those from all faith traditions were taking many medals home for family and friends. The new Kolbe Shrine in the church will serve as a focus for the local faith community to help heal from the adverse effects of addictions (one of the biggest problems in our region). Friar Jobe Abbass, OFM Conv. served as a guest speaker and spoke of Kolbe, as the patron saint for those who suffer from drug addictions; a source of comfort for those in recovery, as well as family members and friends of those who suffer. Pastor Jean Eckrod (above 2nd from right) of the Salem United Church of Christ spoke of her ministry of support for family members of those who have addictions. Resources from the local Oasis Recovery Center were also made available to those who attended the service.
Please note that there are a small change in the schedule for the remainder of the M.I. Initiative tour. It has been decided to postpone the stop at Coal Township & Trevorton (Our Lady of Hope Parish and St. Patrick Parish) until next February.
The following are the last three stops; please make the change in the posted schedules: