2006 Canada Montreal Saint Patrick's Day Parade

Sunday, March 19, 2006 at 11 Noon

2006 Grand Marshal Brian O'Neill



General Meetings

Sunday 1:30pm

January 15, 2006
February 12, 2006
March 12, 2006
Mass of Anticipation
April 23, 2006

St. John Brebeuf Parish LaSalle
(corner Bishop Power & George)

2006 Events
St. Patrick's Parade The 2006 Parade will be held on Sunday, March 19 at Noon
Fort & Ste-Catherine Streets
Ken Quinn
Queen's Selection Night Saturday, January 28, 2006 at 6:30pm. Delta Centre Ville Hotel
Colleen Murphy  514-426-4588
Annual Flag Raising Thursday, February 16, 2006   12 Noon. Place Ville Marie - Concourse
Ken Doran: 514-944-5256
UIS Irish Mingle Friday, March 17, 2006   1:30 - 4:00pm  Cheers Downtown ($10.00)
Mass of Anticipation Sunday, March 12, 2006 - 11:30am at St. Gabriel's Parish
Marlene Demers 514-366-3623
Annual Parade Awards Banquet Saturday, March 25, 2006.  Buffet Sorrento, LaSalle 6pm
Contact:  Sheri Bernier: 514-766-8530
Mass for Deceased Members Monday, April 24, 2006.
St. Dominic's Parish 8:00 PM bus leaves
St. Gabriel's Church 7:00 PM (no charge)
Marlene Demers 514-366-3623
Annual March to the Stone
(sponsored by AOH)
Sunday, May 28, 2006
St. Gabriel's Parish (11:30 AM)
This year's parade will be on Sunday, March 19, 2006 at 11 Noon. It runs along Ste Catherine Street from du Fort to Jeanne Mance where the reviewing stand is placed.
This event will be held at Place Ville Marie on Monday, February 16, 2004 at 11:00am. Everyone is welcome to attend as The Montreal Mayor and other dignitaries raise the St. Patrick's Flag. This is followed by a mini-parade through the shopping concourse with the pipes of The Black Watch.
Mass of Anticipation Sunday, March 7  1:30pm
Held at St. Gabriel's Parish. Attended by Irish Organizations and the public.

Annual Awards’ Banquet & Dinner Dance

Saturday, March 20, 2004
Beverly Murphy (514) 694-0206

Annual March to The Stone March to The Stone on Bridge St.  All welcome
The story of the man in whose honour the parade is held dates back to about 401 A.D. when a fleet of black coracles carried raiding Irish Celts to the shores of England, where they seized thousands of young Romanized Britons as prisoners. Among the captives brought back to Ireland was a 16-year-old lad called Patricius, who would go on to immortality as the Patron Saint of Ireland.

It is imperative to be aware of the historical context of St. Patrick in order to understand what he stands for and the significance of these principles as embodied by the millions of men and women who have marched in his honour every year for the last 179 years.

In his excellent international best-seller, How the Irish Saved Civilization, author Thomas Cahill tells us that Patricius is transported to Ireland where he works alone in the hills as a shepherd-slave for a local chieftan named Miliucc in the district of Antrim. He finds himself "chastened exceedingly." His two constant companions are hunger and nakedness.

Patricius, who had grown up as a non-observant Catholic, is transformed into a holy man during his six years in isolation as a shepherd. With nobody to talk to, he prays constantly - as many as 200 times a day. He becomes a visionary for whom there is no rigid separation between this world and the next. In his dreams, he receives a vision to return home to Britain. Escaping bondage, fortuitous connections permit him to book passage to the Continent, eventually making his way back to England and his family. But once home, he discovers he is more Irish than English. In his visions, he hears the voice of the Irish crying to him: "We beg you to come and walk among us once more." Patricius, the escaped slave, is about to be drafted as Saint Patrick, apostle to the Irish nation, writes Cahill. Saint Patrick is the archetype of the underdog - the stranger who integrates into his adopted land, evolving into a leader whose rectitude and kindness serve as a beacon to its indigenous people. How many times has a similar journey of discovery been repeated over the last two centuries by Irish immigrants who have arrived as strangers in Quebec? The statistics bear witness to how thoroughly the Irish have integrated into Canadian society.

Close to four million Canadians are of Irish ancestry and 40 percent of Quebecers trace their roots to Irish forebears. A glance at the names of municipal, provincial and federal politicians over the last 200 years confirms their leadership role. When we march in the St. Patrick's Parade, we do so - in part - to remind ourselves to open our hearts and our hearths to those strangers less fortunate than ourselves.

But the parade holds additional symbolic significance. To glean those clues, we return to the journey of Saint Patrick 1,500 years ago.
After returning home, Patrick undertakes long studies in a monastery and is ordained a bishop - virtually the first missionary bishop in history. He returns to Ireland, where he establishes his church near modern Armagh and goes on to set up the system of churches throughout northern, central and eastern Ireland to minister to the needs of "his people."

The greatness of Saint Patrick, according to author Cahill, stems from the fact that he was "the first human being in the history of the world to speak out unequivocally against slavery." Saint Patrick, noted for his earthiness and warmth, spent the last 30 years of his life - until his late 70s - teaching pagans to embrace Christian values based on love and forgiveness. Montreal's annual parade, the longest-running, uninterrupted, St. Patrick's Parade in North America is symbolized by these three pillars - freedom, forgiveness and love.

What greater example of love can one find than the open letter to his Montreal parishioners written in March, 1848, by Mgr. Ignace Bourget, the French-Canadian Roman Catholic Bishop of Montreal?

In it, the bishop asks members of his diocese to adopt the hundreds of Irish orphans whose parents have died of disease and starvation in ships while fleeing the Great Potato Famine and the Great Pestilence of 1847 and 1848. Many of those who died after arriving in Montreal were buried in common graves, commemorated by an inscription on the huge stone in the middle of Bridge Street near the entrance to Victoria Bridge.

The Irish community of Montreal, which was relatively young at the time, lacked the resources and institutions to adopt so many orphans. But their French-Canadian neighbors came to the fore.
"Receive them without considering that they may be a burden to you," Bishop Bourget told his flock. "For you know very well that charity, to have any merit, means thinking of others more than of yourself." Edgar Andrew Collard, the respected historian who did a weekly column in The Gazette for many years, wrote that the response from French-Canadians was "prompt and open-hearted."

As Bishop Bourget noted at the time, such orphans "brought up in our midst" would "make common cause with us." To this day, we have a multitude of French-Canadians who bear such Irish names as Murphy, Johnson and Burns.

When we march in the St. Patrick's Parade we pay homage not only to those immigrants who make the long, arduous journey to a new land, but also to those citizens who open their arms to their breathren in need.

Ironically, as though they knew that The Great Potato Famine of 1847 would sweep a massive flood of immigrants to their shores, the local Irish community consecrated a newly erected Roman Catholic Church called Saint Patrick's near Place d'Armes on Wednesday, March 17th of that same year.

Let us peer through the mists of time, remembering with sadness those who perished in search of a better life and saluting those who struggled to establish their roots in a new land.

In memory of those long, difficult journeys and in anticipation of the many, new roads of hope and possibility, we ask you to join with us in sponsoring a pan-Canadian celebration of joy and unity under the banner of the 180th annual St. Patrick's Parade.

for additional info: http://www.bar-resto.com/uis/index.html

Send e-mail directly if you know to whom it should go.

UIS President: [email protected]
Membership: [email protected]
Parade Director: [email protected]
Marketing and Public relations: [email protected]