Sacred Heart, DeSmet
On August 15th this year we only had one Mass here at the Sacred Heart Mission. The Coeur d’Alene Tribe has been celebrating the Feast of Assumption at Cataldo every year with the Bishop. The Coeur d’Alene people built the church at Cataldo in 1853. The church was built out of lumber, mud made from straw/dirt, and wooden pegs, because at that time there were no nails. Chief Circling Raven had a vison about the Black Robes coming. Fr Peter DeSmet arrived in 1843. We used to do a pageant called “The Coming of the Black Robes.” That stopped in 1985 when a generation of elders that did this pageant was no longer with us. Now when we go to Cataldo we have to Celebrate Mass on the lawn beside the church because the church is too old to hold that many people. We also feed the people, usually about 500 people show up for Mass on that day. The Bishop of Idaho still comes to help us celebrate this day. If you should ever get to Cataldo there is a museum there and it tells the history of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe. Every year the Bishop would hand out a medal to someone special in our Tribe that has made a special contribution to our Tribe and Cataldo. In 2019 Cecelia received a special plaque from Bishop Peter Christenson.
Since July 18,2021 we have had 18 people die. Only 5 of them died from Covid and the others of various reasons. It seems like we have had funerals back to back for several months. Twice we had 3 funerals in one weeks. It has been really hard on our Tribe. It has also taken a toll on Fr Peter, Cecelia and myself. We are all involved with the Mass at funerals. Fr Peter Byrne of course is saying Mass, Cecelia leading the singing, and me doing a reading and assisting in passing out Communion. The Coeur d’Alene people have a rosary night in our long house. The deceased one is there, family, relative and friends. During the rosary we sing 4 songs in our language. When Rosary is over different people get up and sing their own family songs, or say prayers or stories of the deceased. When we say Mass for our Native people part of the Mass is done in the Coeur d’Alene language. We start out this the Hest Gee-su, which means Good Jesus. At communion time we sing Ko-lin-tsu-ten, which means God.
Cecelia Curtis- Cook continues to do a reflection one Sunday ever month. She is getting very good at doing the reflection to go with the readings. Cecelia is a perfectionist and does so much research in order to prepare for the reflection. She will be giving her reflection on Christ the King day. Cecelia hasn’t had to do Word of Communion because we changed the Mass times at the beginning of October. We rotate between Plummer and Worley Mass starts at 9:00 and DeSmet moved to 11:00. This way Fr Peter can make it to Mass at both places. Cecelia has been invited to Gonzaga Prep school to help Celebrate Mass on November 18th at noon. This is in celebration of Native American month. Sacred Heart Mission celebrated Mass twice on all Souls day. First Mass was at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Plummer and the second Prayer celebration was at the DeSmet Cemetery around 5:00. As always Cecelia’s singing helps us all get in the spirit of celebration. The Coeur d’Alene people are very fortune to have her with us.
Every Thanksgiving we have one Mass usually here at the Sacred Heart Mission. After Mass have a big pot luck with all 3 parishes in our community. It a good time to catch up others from our community. Once again due to the Covid the last 2 years we haven’t been able to celebrate like this, really missing what used to be. This year we will be celebrating Mass in all 3 parishes. On Sunday the 21st Christ the King, we will have Mass at St Michaels in Worley at 9:00 and at Sacred Heart Mission in DeSmet at 11:00. On Thanksgiving day Mass at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Plummer at 9:00.