INDIAN TOWNSHIP — Carrying on a Passamaquoddy tradition that has been passed on from generation to generation, all are welcome to gather for the annual Good Friday tradition of processing to a brook in Indian Township on Good Friday to draw water. It is believed that on that day, the water has been made holy through Christ’s sacrifice.
The procession will begin at noon on April 7 from St. Ann, located at a place known as Motahkomikuk among the Passamaquoddy people. Passamaquoddy Indian Township Reservation is located just over 10 miles west/northwest of Calais. From the church, participants will walk about a half mile by the Peter Dana Point cemetery while praying the sorrowful mysteries of the rosary.
The tradition goes back farther than anyone can remember, perhaps hundreds of years. Many of the participants have been participating on Good Friday since they were young children, walking alongside parents or grandparents. They say they continue to do it to honor their ancestors and in thanksgiving for Christ’s salvific love.
“No matter how old our elders were or what illnesses they had, even if was raining or snowing, they made that walk,” said Sylvia Sockabasin. “They made that sacrifice because God made his sacrifice for us.”
Once gathered at Sipuhsis, prayers are offered in English and Passamaquoddy before buckets of water are filled and then poured into smaller containers for parishioners and community members. Many parishioners keep the water at their homes, using it for blessings throughout the year.
After returning to St. Ann, the water will be placed at the foot of the altar, alongside a cross, which parishioners will venerate during a Good Friday celebration followed by a meal, also a tradition because, as with any funeral, it is held as a way of honoring and celebrating the dead, in this case, the death of Christ on the cross.
For more information about the event on Good Friday, please contact St. Kateri Tekakwitha Parish, of which St. Ann is a part, at 207-454-0680 or firstname.lastname@example.org.