Fête-Dieu du Teche 2021 is scheduled to take place Sunday August 15. The 40-mile Eucharistic Procession by boat this year coincides with the Year of St. Joseph and the Year of the Family. The procession this year will highlight the Holy Family as Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament will be accompanied by boats carrying the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph.
Families are encouraged to participate by registering a family boat and traveling down the Bayou Teche as a family or by following the stops together for recitation of the Holy Rosary and Benediction. The day begins at 8 AM with Sunday Mass in French by BishopDouglas Deshotel at St. Leo the Great Catholic Church in Leonville.
Following the Mass there will be a procession with the Blessed Sacrament and a statue of Mary and St. Joseph to the nearby boat landing. Families are encouraged to join the procession as a family and follow to the boat landing for Benediction. At 9:30 AM boats will depart in procession down the Teche toward St. Martinville, retracing the voyage made by the Acadians over 250 years ago.
August 15 is a significant dateas it is the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Patroness of the Acadian people and of Acadiana. It is also a day that marks the 256thanniversary of the arrival ofFrench-Canadianimmigrants who brought the Catholic faith to Acadiana after enduring great trials and suffering.
Bishop Deshotel of the Diocese of Lafayette states, “Fete Dieu du Teche has become an annual celebration in commemoration of the arrival of the first Acadians from what is now Nova Scotia.They were the first examples of ethnic cleansing in the New World when they were forced to leave their homes and go into exile because of their Catholic Faith at the end of the French and Indian War. A large number of them found their homes in South Louisiana which was Catholic and French.Many settlements were established along the Teche river where they built Churches, homes and a new life.
Register on-line by completing the form at https://www.jesuscrucified.net/events/fete-dieu-du-teche-2021/form and sign the on-line waiver. Once the registration form is completed and waivers signed, the boat coordinator will contact you with details.The procession will travel at about 8 mph and thus only motorized vessels are allowed. Catholic schools are encouraged to send their students or a representative group to be present at the opening French Mass in Leonville with Bishop Deshotel, at one or more of the stops along the procession, and especially to participate in the final foot procession in St. Martinville. Church parishes, ecclesial movements, KC and St. Peter Claver councils, Catholic schools, etc. are encouraged to register a boat and decorate it accordingly.Celebrating the Year of the Family, families are encouraged to gather the family by boat or by car and worship together. Fifty boats will be allowed to participate which will yield a one-mile procession. Boaters are asked to have an FM radio so that they can participate in the continuous prayers live as they are led by the Eucharist Boat. Additionally, participants in the procession as well as those in their cars or on the banks of the Bayou can follow the prayers and devotions live from the Eucharist boat at www.facebook.com/CommunityofJesusCrucified.
Itinerary for Seventh AnnualEucharistic Boat Procession onBayou TecheSunday,August 15, 2021(Solemnityof the Assumptionof Mary)
8:00 a.m.Holy Massin Frenchwith Bishop John Douglas Deshotel, D.D.at St. Leo the Great Church, Leonville 9:00a.m.Procession from St. Leo’s to Leonville boat landing
9:30 a.m.Boat Processiondeparts
10:20 a.m.Arrive at Arnaudville and disembark for Rosary and Benediction
11:45 a.m.Arrive at Cecilia and disembark for Rosary and Benediction
1:35p.m.Arrive at Breaux Bridge and disembark for Rosary and Benediction
3:15p.m.Arrive at Parks and disembark for Rosary and Benediction
4:45p.m.Flotilla arrives at St. Martinvillebehind Notre Dame; Foot Procession to Notre Dame de Perpetuel Secours for Benediction
5:00p.m.Procession from Notre Dame to St. Martin de Tours Church for Benediction
5:30p.m.Procession down Main Street to Our Lady of SorrowsChapel for Solemn Vespers & Final Benediction
6:00p.m.Solemn Vespers and Benediction of the Blessed Sacramentat Mater Dolorosa Chape
For more information, visit the website www.jesuscrucified.net or Fete-Dieu du Teche on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CommunityofJesusCrucified/ or contact Fr. Michael Champagne, CJC by telephone at (337) 394-6550 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org