St. Joseph Parish in Farmington and St. Rose of Lima Parish in Jay are planning a Catholic Rural Life Festival to be held Sept. 14-16. The 2018 festival will feature special events, dinners and liturgies all designed to bring awareness to our call to be stewards of creation.

“The festival expresses Catholic faith and culture rooted in the rhythms of the natural world as well as the cycle of liturgical prayer,” said Fr. Paul Dumais, pastor of both St. Joseph and St. Rose of Lima, according to a news release from Dave Guthro, Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland. “There are elements of practical life and the arts along with a program for liturgical prayer and sacred music. We hope that the hundreds of people who enjoyed the festival last year will invite family and friends this time around.”

“I really think it’s about showing our presence in the community,” said Kathleen Pike, a parishioner from Jay, according to the release. “It addresses rural life in Maine, and I’m a little bit passionate about that because I think we have a lot to offer in these towns, and I think that Church life is part of that, and we can have a better presence.”

A presentation of the Stations of the Cross will be offered at 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14, at Holy Cross Cemetery on Park Street in Livermore Falls. A recitation of the rosary will begin at 5:30 p.m. and a Feast of the Holy Cross Mass at 6 p.m. will be held at St. Rose of Lima on 1 Church St. (Route 4) in Jay.

Holy Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (Traditional Latin Mass) will be celebrated at 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 15, at St. Rose of Lima, followed by a lunch at noon. A “Blessing of the Fields” including a solemn procession will be held at1:30 p.m. at Castonguay Ayrshires Farm on 39 Richmond Hill Road in Livermore. Several events take center stage at 4 p.m.: a free art exhibit and a Maine craft beer tasting (tickets cost $10 with proceeds going towards food security for many in need in Franklin County, more information below) at St. Joseph Hall on 133 Middle Street in Farmington; a traditional step dance lesson in the basement of St. Joseph; and a Mass at St. Rose of Lima. At 5 p.m., the Festival Farm to Table Supper is set for the upper hall at St. Joseph. The meal will feature food from more than a dozen local farms. Tickets cost $20 per person. A “Kids’ Kitchen” event will be held simultaneously in the downstairs hall. Tickets cost $8, children five years old or younger can attend for free.

Hidden Fifth will perform a Contra dance at 7 p.m. in the upper hall. The band features Deidre Becher, who has toured around the world with her family’s band, Celtic Spring. Becher and Celtic Spring performed on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” in 2007 and was one of the show’s finalists. Contra dance is a folk dance made up of long lines of couples. It has mixed origins from English country dance as well as Scottish and French dance styles in the 17th century.

The final day of the festival will begin with a Mass at St. Rose of Lima at 8:30 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 16, followed by a waffle breakfast at 9:30 a.m. in the parish hall. Proceeds will benefit the Tri-Town Ministerial Good Neighbor Fund which assists local people in need of heating oil and fuel. Masses will also be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. and 5 St. Joseph. Prior to the evening Mass, there will be eucharistic adoration with a recitation of the Chaplet of Divine Mercy at 3 p.m. and the opportunity for confessions at 4 p.m. A lunch will be offered at noon at the St. Joseph booth of the Farmington Fair.

For a complete schedule or for the latest festival news and updates, visit

To purchase tickets for the ticketed events, call 897-2173. For more information, call St. Joseph Parish at 778-2778.

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