LEWISTON — Over 200 people gathered as the pipe organ originally housed in Notre Dame de Lourdes Church in Saco was blessed and dedicated at its new home in the crypt chapel of the Basilica of Ss. Peter and Paul Basilica during a 4 p.m. Mass on June 28.

Monsignor Marc Caron, pastor of Prince of Peace Parish, served as the main celebrant with Monsignor René Mathieu, pastor of Good Shepherd Parish in Saco, concelebrating. The Mass was conducted in the French language.

Notre Dame de Lourdes Church was closed in December of 2009. Good Shepherd Parish donated the organ to Prince of Peace Parish, and the organ was dismantled in 2013 before being moved to Lewiston.

It was refurbished thanks to a gift from the estate of Father Maurice Morin, who was born in Lewiston in 1938 and served as parochial vicar at St. Andre Church in Biddeford (1967-1970) and pastor of St. Joseph Church in Biddeford (1983-1989). Part of the bequest covered the cost of moving, repairing and installing the instrument.

Members of the Morin family attended the Mass, as did parishioners from Good Shepherd Parish. A Knights of Columbus honor guard with representatives from Biddeford and Lewiston also participated.

“On pilgrimage with a delegation of Good Shepherd parishioners from the Saco, Biddeford, Lyman and Old Orchard Beach area, we have come here somewhat like an elderly relative visiting a beloved family member to distribute a valuable family heirloom to a younger generation,” said Monsignor Mathieu to the assembly.

“The history of the diocese published years ago described this basilica as the ‘jewel in the crown of the Catholic Church in Maine.’ I trust this refurbished pipe organ, once housed in Notre Dame de Lourdes Church, will add to the luster of this jewel,” he said.


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