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The provincial promotional office Ciné-Québec presents

Marian Congress in Ottawa, June 1947

Tribute to His Excellency Archbishop Alexandre Vachon

Archbishop of Ottawa

 

A film by Fr. Maurice Proulx

 

 

Hail Mary!

Ottawa, 16 June 1947

 

In this capital, where beats the heart of the Dominion of Canada, mighty arms projected over the world the triumph of the Virgin over souls and hearts.

 

From the Shrine of Cap-de-la-Madeleine, towns and villages in five dioceses have made the ascent to this summit.

 

The seven hundred mile journey of the Virgin was prepared by a foundation of  preaching and paved by penances and offerings, lined with prayers and devotions.

 

O sing out, night of joy!

 

Ring out to the four winds immense joy with bells and hallelujahs!

 

Here is the protector of day and night, and here is the chapel of peace where for 127 continuous hours, Mass will be celebrated and Christ given to Man 150,000 times.

 

Princes of the Church have come to guide the throng of faithful believers.

 

His Eminence, Cardinal McGuigan, Archbishop of Toronto, Papal Legate, accompanies His Excellency, the Apostolic Delegate, Antonio Bagnoli.

 

There is a clear sky over the dawn of Marian Thursday.

 

Archbishop Vachon greets the morning as it breaks over the centenary of the Ottawa diocese.

 

This eve of the jubilee prepares the pilgrims for the sublime days to come.

 

Cardinals, archbishops, and bishops, extraordinary ambassadors of the only truth, have come to celebrate your triumph, O Virgin. They come to lay at your feet the pain over which dominates faith, the misery that is made tolerable by hope, and the sacrifice that is called for by charity.

 

Civil authority joins religious authority and the splendour of its receptions befits the occasion.

 

Viscount Alexander, Governor General of Canada, receives the leaders of the Church, spiritual governors of the Catholic world.

 

Among them, on the right, is Cardinal Mindszenty, who will suffer persecution.

 

Night-time renews the fervour of the day.

 

O Star whose rays reach us with forbearance, we glorify you in our humble light shows.

 

Friday morning consists of offerings and reparations.

 

Bishop Vladimir Ladyka, apostolic eparch to Ukrainians in Canada, celebrates a pontifical in dull white robes.

 

The Christian East and West find at the feet of Mary a united expression of prayer.

 

Cardinal Tisserant, of the Sacred Congregation for the Oriental Churches.

 

His Eminence Betancourt, Archbishop of Havana.

 

Cardinal Frings, Archbishop of Cologne.

 

Cardinal Mindszenty, martyr for the Hungarian church that will one day be free.

 

From India comes Archbishop Ivanios, who along with all his church converted to Catholicism.

 

In the afternoon, the eloquence of religious speakers attracts crowds and dignitaries.

 

In the evening, the great film Our Lady of Fair Love which chronicles the life of the Blessed Virgin with a sincerity of expression that makes it a work of faith.

 

From Quebec, the Catholic province, comes Premier Duplessis.

 

Cardinal Gerlier brings with him the presence of France, eldest daughter of the Church.

 

The deep religious convictions that are rooted in Quebec in her priests and French school system qualifies Mr. Duplessis for the honour of introducing the eloquent prelate.

 

The Marian celebrations in Ottawa would be incomplete without a religious exhibition.

 

The universality of the reign of Mary is the most beautiful and true of stories.

 

An international fresco of one hundred and six kiosks is a witness to that.

 

Half a million visitors have walked through this incomparable book of apologetics.

 

Most interested and perhaps the most notable of the pilgrims were the Dionne quintuplets and their families.

 

Saturday, fourth chapter of the Congress and a day of worship.

 

With all the vigour of their devotion, young Canadian schoolchildren sing in a participative Mass.

 

Bishop Langlois of Valleyfield speaks to them about religious vocations.

 

Before their eyes are the most worthy sons of the Church.

 

Archbishop Roy of Quebec.

 

Cardinal Spellman, Archbishop of New York.

 

Bishop Cody, apostolic missionary eparch.

 

And the cornerstone faith of the children, which is the highest tribute that the Blessed Virgin will receive, in this spiritual treasure they give to Archbishop Vachon.

 

They have asked for only one touching favour: good weather for the Congress.

 

In the Marian procession, the most beautiful symbols and the most vibrant colours glorify Our Lady.

 

The vast ribbon of people and floats have spread over three weeks the glory of the Queen of Heaven and Earth.

 

To Jesus through Mary.

 

Our Mother of Perpetual Help, we pray that you open the heart of your Son to us.

 

Our Lady of the Snows, Queen of great expanses, protect our land.

 

Without knowing the glorious destiny of their daughter, Joachim and Anne dedicated Mary to the service of God.

 

The archangel Gabriel said, “Hail O full of grace. The Lord is with you. You are blessed among all women. And Jesus, the fruit of your womb, is blessed.”

 

Fearing a newborn said to be God, Herod slaughtered the innocents.

 

The Holy Family fled to Egypt.

 

Sorrowful Mother, hope of those who weep, here you give us the Son who desires to be our brother.

 

Comforter of the afflicted, lower your gaze on those who suffer.

 

Morningstar to mariners and Queen of the elements, shine in my lonely night.

 

Queen of the Apostles and Mother of wisdom, give your Church many labourers for God's harvest.

 

Queen of Peace, grant that our children never know the futile atrocity of battlefields.

 

Mystical Rose, who poured out the perfume of blessings, allow our temples to flourish.

 

Immaculate Mother, distance from hearts defiling corruption.

 

O spotless lily, guardian of every virtue, let us rejoice in His glorious Ascension.

 

The Mother of God thrones above the choirs of angels.

 

And the Eternal Father receives her as his beloved daughter.

 

He made her the most glorious of queens and her reign will never end.

 

Look with love on the banks of the great river, where live a still young people who desire to grow in faith.

 

Grant us your favours.

 

Preside over our destinies.

 

O Mary, Our Lady of Canada.

 

O you, from whom the day receives the day without end, light of the world, give to Man, from the well of your loving and fraternal sorrows, Mother of the infinite and Mother of the humble, give eternal love.

 

Sunday, summit of the Congress, day of consecration.

 

On this last day of these pious manifestations, in one gathering will assemble all the crowds, all the princely processions, all the pageantry, and all the devotion that the first days had witnessed.

 

Once again, before us pass the noblest personages of the Congress.

 

His Excellency Alexandre Vachon, Archbishop of Ottawa, the organizer of the Congress.

 

Cardinals Frings and Mindszenty, who are leaders in their countries tormented by communism.

 

Cardinal Betancourt, who will preside over the consecration ceremony.

 

Cardinal Spellman of New York, spiritual director of a stronger Catholic minority than the massed population that surrounds it.

 

Cardinal Mooney, Archbishop of Detroit.

 

Cardinal Gerlier, Archbishop of Lyon, who will confer upon Archbishop Vachon the Officer of the Legion of Honour Medal.

 

And Cardinal Tisserant.

 

Cardinal McGuigan, Archbishop of Toronto, Papal Legate.

 

The great serenity instilled within countless faithful by preaching and prayer will never be known.

 

The anonymous face of this throng will never reveal the individual exaltations of consciences, the hidden, intimate shared joy.

 

Transcending the divisions of languages and borders, the universal Catholic Church here offers the comfort of true faith and many are they who come to draw from it.

 

The Heads of State whose daily task is the life of a nation.

 

The great and the humble, the weak who no longer feel tired, the sick who smile in the blazing sun, the pious and the reluctant who ask for strength, the strong who seek prudence, the unbelievers who are surprised at being shaken, the skeptics who look on astonished and cannot avert their eyes, the curious or the sincere, they all wanted to go to the Virgin, and grace lined their way.

 

Of the committees that surround Archbishop Vachon, the most noble is that of good weather.

 

The tireless Archbishop finds a rare moment of leisure to receive his family and, among those with whom he stops for a moment, is a very proud father of five daughters.

 

With the greatest stage artists of merit, the Dionne quintuplets sing praise to the Virgin at the solemn consecration of the Blessed Sacrament.

 

At the altar is a living Mother over which passes a great breath of joy.

 

This last religious ceremony of the afternoon is the consecration of Canada to Our Lady.

 

Night falls and the Marian Congress comes to a close.

 

For five days and five nights, one and a half million pilgrims have come to kneel at the foot of the altar in Ottawa.

 

For five days and five nights, the Mother of men poured out her grace throughout the earth.

 

Light in the darkness, Mother of the Son of God, our Mother, may the praises of your people be sweet.

 

Ottawa, 22 June 1947

 

Hail Mary!

 

Ottawa Marian Congress

 

The end

 

A film by Father Maurice Proulx

 

Transcribed, translated and narrated by Robert Du Broy in 2016.

 

https://sites.google.com/site/mariancongress1947/home/short-summary

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