DUNMORE – A tradition that is more than a century old continued in Dunmore this year.
On Sunday, Aug. 14, 2022, Saints Anthony and Rocco Parish held its annual procession of the saints throughout the Bunker Hill section of the community.
Started in 1906, the procession has taken place every year, including during the COVID-19 pandemic, when the event was broadcast on social media.
“Saint Rocco’s actual Feast Day is Aug. 16, so we always have our procession the closest weekend prior to the Feast, unless the Feast falls on a Sunday,” parishioner Carlo Pisa said.
Pisa has been involved in the procession his entire life.
“It gets the community together. It gets the neighborhood together,” he said. “In today’s world, tradition is very, very important.”
Many families participate in the procession together. When they all come together, it symbolizes the strength of their parish family.
“This is definitely important for all of us to come together and share what we have,” parishioner Ivan Worobey said. “This bonds us forever, and the feeling, you don’t get this feeling too often.”
Reverend David Cappelloni, Pastor, Saints Anthony & Rocco Parish, who blessed the people with a relic of Saint Rocco at a special Mass before the procession said the event helps the parish have an identity.
“We carry the statues of our patron saints, the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph throughout the neighborhood to remind people of who we are and who we’re called to be,” he explained.
Angelesa DeNaples of Moscow is grateful for the annual tradition.
“I love every moment of it. It is so nice to see everyone. The Lord has sent us here,” DeNaples said. “It’s an amazing tradition that we keep doing and I pray that we never stop doing it.”
In addition to the special Mass and procession, the community also celebrated its annual three-day festival the same weekend.
“These people walk in a procession of faith but if you talk to so many of them, as I do, 90 percent of them will tell you that their walk and their prayers are for someone that they are remembering,” Larry Spegar of Jessup added.