CELEBRATING THE 350TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE FOUNDING OF THE PARISH OF NOTRE-DAME DE QUÉBEC
WHEREAS, the church of Notre-Dame de Québec was constructed at its current location in Québec City in 1647 and it is the primatial church of Canada, and the seat of the Archdiocese of Québec, the oldest see in the New World north of Mexico; and
WHEREAS, the territory of the Diocese of Québec, which was established by Pope Clement X in 1674 and first led by Bishop François de Laval, included all the possessions of France in North America from the Atlantic Coast in Canada to the plains of the far West, the Mississippi Valley, and the Louisiana territories, an area comprising a land mass much larger than all of Europe; and
WHEREAS, on September 15, 1664, Bishop de Laval founded the first parish in Québec, honoring Notre-Dame de l’Immaculée-Conception, with its first parish priest, Father Henri de Bernière; and
WHEREAS, Notre-Dame de Québec was the first church in North America to be elevated to the rank of minor basilica by Pope Pius IX in 1874; and
WHEREAS, the parish suffered two devastating destructions of the cathedral church, during the Siege of Québec in 1759 and as the result of a fire in 1922, and on both occasions was rebuilt for the greater glory of God; and
WHEREAS, the Cathedral is a National Historic Site of Canada, located within the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Historic District of Old Québec, and is the final resting place of the deceased Bishops and Archbishops of Québec and four governors of New France; and
WHEREAS, the Notre-Dame de Québec, as the first parish in Canada, is also the mother parish of all parishes in Canada and the United States; and
WHEREAS, the cathedral parish of Notre Dame de Québec will hold a jubilee year commemorating the 350th anniversary of its founding, from December 8, 2013, through December 28, 2014; and
WHEREAS, a newly constructed Holy Door at Notre-Dame de Québec Cathedral, a gift of the Order of the Knights of Columbus, will be open for pilgrims to enter through during the 350th anniversary celebrations; and
WHEREAS, the Supreme Officers, State Deputies, and State Chaplains will make a pilgrimage to Notre-Dame de Québec on November 7, 2013; and
WHEREAS, at this Supreme Convention, we have inaugurated a new Marian Prayer Program featuring the image of Mary Immaculate from Notre-Dame de Québec, as a manifestation of our devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Order of the Knights of Columbus celebrates along with the cathedral parish of Notre Dame de Québec the 350th anniversary of its founding; and
FURTHER RESOLVED, that we acknowledge the great importance of this event in the life of the Church in Canada and for the entirety of North America, and pray that with these strong historic roots the Church may continue to grow and flourish; and
FURTHER RESOLVED, that we will pray for the canonization of Blessed François de Laval that, through his intercession, the seed of faith that he sowed may continue to bear abundant fruit in the Western Hemisphere; and
FURTHER RESOLVED, that, as Knights of Columbus, we stand in solidarity with the Primate of Canada, the Most Reverend Gérald Cyprien Lacroix, I.S.P.X., Archbishop of Québec and all the Bishops of Canada as they lead the flock entrusted to their care along the path of holiness, commending them to the maternal intercession of Notre-Dame de l’Immaculée-Conception.