Wedding of the Sea in Atlantic City on Aug. 15

Wedding of the Sea in Atlantic City on Aug. 15
Bishop Dennis Sullivan is taken into the surf in an Atlantic City lifeboat during last year’s Wedding of the Sea. This year’s ceremony is scheduled for Aug. 15. Photo by James A. McBride

Bishop Dennis Sullivan is taken into the surf in an Atlantic City lifeboat during last year’s Wedding of the Sea. This year’s ceremony is scheduled for Aug. 15.
Photo by James A. McBride

The Parish of Saint Monica, the newly united citywide parish of Atlantic City, will hold the annual Wedding of the Sea on Saturday, Aug. 15, at Boardwalk Hall.

The summer tradition will bring together the four church communities, Saint Michael, Saint Nicholas of Tolentine, Our Lady Star of the Sea, and Saint Monica, that became one last month under the guidance of Bishop Dennis Sullivan.

Beginning in Venice around the year 1,000 A.D., when civil and religious leaders performed an annual “wedding” between the city and the Mediterranean Sea, the event symbolized the maritime power’s vital relationship to the sea.

“For generations, Italian immigrants in Atlantic City have performed their own Wedding of the Sea between their new home and the Atlantic Ocean,” said Father Jon Thomas, Parish of Saint Monica pastor, in a letter to the faithful. “This year’s Wedding of the Sea will celebrate this relationship and ask God to grant success to the work of so many to build up this great city.”

Starting at noon in the Adrian Phillips Ballroom at Boardwalk Hall, Mississippi Avenue and the Boardwalk, the event will begin at 12 noon, with Miss America 2015, Kira Kazantsev, and Atlantic City Mayor Don Guardian.

The Mass of the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary will follow immediately after, celebrated by Bishop Dennis Sullivan. The church community will next process with the statue of the Blessed Mother to the surf, where Bishop Sullivan and Mayor Guardian will together toss the ceremonial wreath into the ocean.

Boardwalk Hall is fully ADA accessible, and there will be reserved seats for the hearing impaired.

Following the ceremonies, there will be a luncheon at Saint Michael’s Quaremba Hall. There is limited parking at the Georgia Avenue lot behind Saint Michael’s Church, but the hall is only one block from Boardwalk Hall.

In addition to the Parish of Saint Monica, other shore parishes in the Diocese of Camden will be celebrating the Wedding of the Sea.

On Friday, Aug. 14, Bishop Sullivan will celebrate the 5:30 p.m. Mass at Saint Ann Church, Notre Dame de la Mer Parish, in Wildwood, followed by a procession and blessing of the sea.

On Saturday, Aug. 15, the parish community of Saint Brendan the Navigator, Avalon, will have a 10:30 a.m. Mass at Saint Paul Church, Stone Harbor, followed by a procession to 101st street, for the blessing.

At 10 a.m. that same day, Holy Trinity Parish will have Mass at Church of the Epiphany, Longport, followed by procession and blessing.

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