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What: An outdoor Mass.
When: 10 a.m., Thursday, Oct. 22
Why: To honor all Catholic priests in Florida, including the 12 who arrived with Hernando DeSoto in 1539.
Who: Bishop Frank J. Dewane will celebrate the Mass.
Where: Memorial Cross and Holy Eucharist Monument at the DeSoto National Memorial. See the map for directions to the site.
BRADENTON - An outdoor Mass at the DeSoto National Memorial will honor all Catholic priests serving in Florida, starting with the 12 who arrived with Hernando DeSoto in 1539.
The Diocese of Venice said in a press release that Bishop Frank J. Dewane will celebrate the Mass at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 22, at the Memorial Cross and Holy Eucharist Monument the diocese dedicated on the banks of the Manatee River in 1996.
It's believed that DeSoto's expedition landed in this part of Southwest Florida.
The outdoor Mass was planned as part of the "Year of Celebration" commemorating the 25th anniversary of the diocese, but the event took on added significance when Pope Benedict XVI inaugurated a "Year for Priests" from June 19, 2009, to June 19, 2010.
In addition to clergy and laity, schoolchildren from St. Joseph Catholic School in Bradenton will attend the celebration. The outdoor Mass is being held in conjunction with the Manatee County Natural Resources Department and the National Park Service.
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