By Dc. Tom Cuskey

St. Ann is the patron saint of grandmothers, and more than a few were in attendance for the last evening.

This is a tradition that has withstood the test of time at St. Vincent de Paul Church on Syracuse’s East side. Through challenges: two World Wars, the Great Depression and the Covid pandemic. Through many good times and fond memories as well.

Each year, for 129 years, the people come to attend the St. Ann Triduum, three days of prayer, worship and celebration honoring the mother of Mary, our Blessed Mother.


“People are hungry spiritually and they connect with the Spirit through the Triduum,’ says Father Severine Yagaza, pastor of St Vincent de Paul and Blessed Sacrament Churches. “They embrace the spirituality of the mother of Mary who gave of herself totally.”

Bishop Douglas J. Lucia presided on the first evening, July 24, and a Mass of Healing was offered on the second evening, celebrated by Fr. Amedeo Guida. The third night — always July 26, the Feast of St. Ann — is a Mass and Rosary procession. Fr. Stephen Wirkes was celebrant.

Parishioner Ann Gorton has coordinated the liturgical event the past several years, and she points out that the three days are part of something bigger. “There is a novena of nine days to St. Ann, and it’s in honor of what St. Ann did for Mary, the mother of Jesus,” she adds. “She is the patron saint of grandmothers, and we have a lot of grandmothers here!”

Those devoted to St Ann come in all ages and sizes.

Lucianna, a grandmother and great-grandmother, had a front pew seat, along with a couple of other grandmother friends. “We are devoted to St. Anne,” she told us. She and her friend Anna have been attending the Triduum for the past 20 years. Anna shared that she “loves this devotion so much, we all look forward to it every year.”

This year they were joined by a newbie to the event, Patty, who attended the Tuesday healing Mass and came back for the last evening seeking more of the graces of the liturgy. “I need a lot of help from her for my little ones, Patty said, speaking of St. Ann.

The trio will be back next year, along with many others. One can put the 130th observance of the Triduum on their 2024 calendar now, July 24 through 26, 2024.

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