Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Sunday 18 April |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Maria Anna Blondin
home iconNews
line break icon

Exclusive photos: The celebration of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in Brooklyn


Jeffrey Bruno

Jeffrey Bruno - published on 07/19/20

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the iconic New York festa was cancelled. But the faithful still managed to pay their respects to their patroness.

For the first time since 1945, the festival was canceled. No carnival. No Giglio lift. No zeppoles … But that didn’t stop Brooklyn’s faithful from celebrating the Feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, their beloved patroness.

For the past 133 years, the Feast of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel has been one of the grandest Italian-Catholic feasts in New York City. Each year it attracts tens of thousands to the Shrine Church of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel to join in the week-long celebration. This year, of course, was a bit of an exception, in terms of attendees. 

The “Festa” would typically include attractions for all ages. Street singers, games, and the massive “Giglio lift,” in which a 75-foot tall, four-ton tower is carried and “danced” by over 160 men through the streets of Brooklyn.

But in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, this iconic New York tradition had to be canceled. However, the faithful prayerfully gathered to honor the Blessed Mother. While there would be no “Festa,” they would celebrate Mass and process through the neighborhood.

Bishop Dimarzio’s homily focused on the importance of the true worship of God, devotion to Our Lady, and the significance of the scapular. “St. Simon Stock had received from Mary this apparition. She promised to care for those who would honor her with their prayer and do penance and wear the brown scapular, which imitates a monks habit … It reminds us of the particular attachment we have to prayer in our lives … It’s not a charm … It’s a way of life.”

The faithful gathered around the life-size statue of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel mounted on a trailer. They processed, praying the Rosary and distributing scapulars, showing a hurting world what unity might look like. 

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
Annalisa Teggi
Amputee from the waist down is thankful every day to be alive
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
Philip Kosloski
5 Essential things used at Mass and their symbolism
Cerith Gardiner
7 Joys to be had from a lengthy marriage
Philip Kosloski
Catholic prayers for strength
Zelda Caldwell
Mystery of crosses on walls of Church of the Holy Sepulchre may h...
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.