The Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church will celebrate 125 unbroken years of devotion to the Blessed Mother from July 12 to 15.
Festivities will culminate on July 15 with a 9 a.m. solemn Mass in the church celebrated by Cardinal Blase Cupich, a morning procession to a noon field Mass and a second procession following the Mass.
A street festival will run from July 12 to 15, and a Novena will run from July 6 to 14. Related events include the presentation of the banners at 7 p.m. on July 10, the presentation of the roses at 6 p.m. on July 11 and a memorial service for deceased members of the Feast Committee on July 12. (708-344-4140)
The feast was launched when Mrs. Emmanuela DeStefano commissioned a statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and had it shipped to Melrose Park in time for the first celebration in 1894.
The first feast was held on Mrs. DeStefano’s farmland at 25th and North avenues. A chapel was built at the turn of the 20th century on 24th Avenue, and the parish was established in 1905.
A new church was completed in 1909, a school in 1913, additional school buildings in 1950 and 1961, and a larger, modern church and shrine in 1968.