Holy Rosary announces anniversary celebrations

PHILADELPHIA – On Saturday, Oct. 4, at 5 p.m., Bishop Joseph Kopacz will celebrate a  Mass of thanksgiving celebrating both the 130th anniversary of the founding of Holy Rosary Indian Mission and the 70th anniversary of the work of the Missionary Servants of the Holy Trinity in that community. The Mass will be followed by a potluck supper and a special game of bingo.
“We call it ‘religious bingo,’” explained Father Bob Goodyear, ST, pastor. “All the prizes are religious articles that are not easily found in this area – rosaries, crucifixes, bibles, children’s Bibles, a statue of Our Lady of Grace, a framed picture of Kateri Tekakwitha, a nativity scene, etc.,” he added.
Chief Phyliss Anderson and members of the Choctaw Tribal Council representing Tucker are planning to attend the festivities. Chief Anderson, the first female chief of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians, will present two tribal council resolutions, one in honor of the mission and one in honor of the Missionary Servants. The resolutions recognize the work of both the Diocese of Jackson and the Missionary Servants in improving the quality of life for the Choctaw and other community members.
One of them states“ … the Tribal Council does hereby express its thanks to the many individuals who have worked at Holy Rosary Indian Mission through the past hundred years, including priests, sisters, brothers, volunteers and officials of the Jackson Diocese, including Bishops, who have made outstanding individual contributions to the Mission which have positively influenced generations of Tribal members and which have resulted in establishing enduring religious institutions which are vital to the Choctaw community,”
The second part of the celebration is set for December when Bishop Kopacz will preach an Advent mission Dec. 8-10 at Holy Rosary. This celebration will incorporate cultural aspects of Choctaw life, including social dancing.
Holy Rosary was dedicated Sept. 10, 1884, to serve the Native Americans still living in Mississippi. As the population shifted the diocese opened Conehatta St. Catherine and Pearl River St. Therese missions as well. Choctaw culture is still important in the community. Father Goodyear translated the Mass into Choctaw and got permission in 1983 to celebrate the first Choctaw Mass at St. Catherine’s.
The parish is selling T-shirts to commemorate the anniversary. Contact Father Goodyear for order forms and information at BGST1@aol.com