Annual Miracle of the Lilies event to be held December 8

On Dec. 8, the 25th Annual French/Indian Celebration of Reenacting the Miracle of the Lilies will be held at the Kaskaskia Immaculate Conception Church at 3:30 p.m.

Please join in on this Illinois Bicentennial Year to relive and remember the early tradition of the historic old church in Illinois’ French Colonial District.

One long ago Dec. 8, according to legend, a Native American woman sadly made her way to the church. The ladies of the congregation were each bringing a gift in honor of Mary, but this woman was very poor and was empty-handed.

Walking with her eyes cast down in sadness, she suddenly noticed lilies blooming through the snow and ice. She gathered an armful of the flowers to take to church as her gift. All were amazed.

In the reenactment, the women sing a hymn in a Native American language. The lilies remain in the church through December as part of its celebration of Christmas, and the traditions of the Indians.

Jeffrey Roscow will play hymns on the 1878 pipe organ and Father Leo Hayes will preside at a mass service that follows the ceremony where prayers in the Indian language as well as English are used. Refreshments will follow the ceremony. All are welcome.

For more on the Miracle of Lilies, please see this week’s print edition.