Thousands attend Atlantic City Wedding of the Sea celebration

Thousands attend Atlantic City Wedding of the Sea celebration

Bishop Dennis Sullivan gives his homily during Mass in Adrian Phillips Ballroom of Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City on Aug. 15, the feast of the Assumption. Among the many concelebrants were Father Robert Hughes, Vicar General of the Diocese of Camden; Father John Vignone, Dean of Atlantic County; Father Jon Thomas, Father Thanh Pham and Father Fernando Carmona of the Parish of Saint Monica; Father Perry Cherubini, president of Holy Spirit High School, Absecon; and Father Thomas Barcellona, pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, Galloway.

Photos by James A. McBride
A light rain falls as Bishop Dennis Sullivan and others walk on the Atlantic City beach before the bishop prepares to take a lifeboat into the surf for the annual Wedding of the Sea ceremony.

ATLANTIC CITY — The off-and-on raindrops earlier this week for the Wedding of the Sea celebrations throughout South Jersey, celebrating the Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary, brought momentary uncertainty, but Bishop Dennis Sullivan reminded the faithful just where true constancy lies.

“Mary’s (bodily) Assumption reminds us that heaven is our destiny,” he stressed to all gathered here at Boardwalk Hall on Aug. 15 for the morning Mass and subsequent blessing of the sea.

In Atlantic City on Tuesday and in Wildwood the night before, Bishop Sullivan entered a boat and set off into the Atlantic Ocean’s surf to throw a wreath into its waters, keeping alive a tradition that began in the 15th century when an Italian archbishop calmed stormy seas with a toss of his pastoral ring.

Asking for God’s help in keeping strong the bond between the city and the sea, the bishop quoted Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudato Si’, which calls for the care of all of God’s creation.

“All that exists is a caress of God,” Bishop Sullivan said, adding that “the sea is a gift from God.”

The Camden prelate celebrated a vigil Mass for the Assumption at Wildwood’s Notre Dame de la Mer Parish, in addition to the Atlantic City liturgy.

The Boardwalk Hall Mass and procession to the ocean were the middle portions of a daylong Wedding of the Sea celebration in Atlantic City, which began with a blessing of the new convent for the Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal (see related story, page 6) and ended with a festival in the Saint Michael Church parking lot that included music, local food vendors, and a tour of the new convent.

Categories: Latest News

About Author