Feast of the Blessed Sacrament

Blessed Sacrament, Feast of the

First weekend in August
The Festival of the Blessed Sacrament held annually in New Bedford, Massachusetts, coincides with a similar festival on the Portuguese island of Madeira. The American festival, which was first held in 1914, celebrates the safe arrival of the Portuguese immigrants who came to New Bedford in the early 19th century after braving rough seas and stormy weather en route.
The descendants of these immigrants, many of whom served aboard American whaleships, give thanks each year by holding what they would like to think of as the largest Portuguese feast in the world on the first weekend in August. Preparations for the festivities go on throughout the year, and the events include a parade, Portuguese folkloric dancers and singers, Portuguese specialties such as cabra (goat) and bacalhau (codfish), and a colorful procession to the Immaculate Conception Church. The festival is held at Madeira Field, although the events extend throughout the city. New Bedford, once a thriving New England whaling port, remains home to a large Portuguese-American community.
Club Madeirense S.S. Sacramento Inc.
50 Madeira Ave.
New Bedford, MA 02746
GdUSFest-1984, p. 87
Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations of the World Dictionary, Fourth Edition. © 2010 by Omnigraphics, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Thus the Church instituted the Feast of the Blessed Sacrament in the 13th century, of the Holy Name in the 15th century, of the Sacred Heart in the 17th century and of the Precious Blood in the 19th century.

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