Every spring, Mary Queen of the World Cathedral is overrun by 11-year-olds and their families for Holy Spirit Day. This year, about 600 youngsters and their families made their way downtown to participate in one of three scheduled gatherings at the cathedral, organized to help those preparing for confirmation to "catch the Spirit" at work in the diocesan Church.
Archbishop Christian Lépine welcomed his energetic flock April 2, before turning the confirmands loose to explore the magnificent cathedral on a "faith-hunt." Wandering through the 123-year-old church, they looked for the answers to 30 questions about their Catholic beliefs, history and traditions tucked away in the historic building.
Auxiliary Bishops Thomas Dowd and Alain Faubert each hosted a similar cathedral gathering for French-speaking confirmands.
About half of the 1,140 children who are being confirmed in English-language services were at the Sunday afternoon event. In total, about 2,700 from 115 parishes were confirmed this spring.
"Equipped with the gifts and fruits of the Spirit and sealed in Him, they are now being sent forth, with a lot of energy, as the church of tomorrow," says organizer Mary Comito, Associate Director of the Office for Faith Education.
They join the 2,945 who were confirmed last year.