Photo by Alan M. Dumoff
Italian-American parishioners in Bridgeton and Hammonton celebrated the feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel on Friday, July 16. In Bridgeton, worshippers carried a statue of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, along with replicas of other saints, through the city streets to the Church of the Immaculate Conception. Starting at 8:30 a.m., the procession, which included descendants of the founders of the procession from Central Italy, ended at the church in time for 9 a.m. Mass. Afterward, a Communion breakfast was held at Centerton Club. In Hammonton, a Tuesday-Sunday festival was planned on the grounds of St. Joseph’s Church, with live music, rides and games, and a two-mile procession. The tradition began over 100 years ago, as a tribute and thanks to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, in giving Italians safe passage to the United States. Below left, Elana Angliani carries the crown of flowers during the procession in Bridgeton.