The Silver Rose
EDMONTON — A Knights of Columbus program that's been around for more than 50 years is new to most Albertans. The North American effort pays tribute to Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americans.
"This is only the second year for the Silver Rose Run to be in Western Canada," said Larry Boland of Airdrie, former master of the Alberta fourth degree Knights
"The theme is One Life — One Rose. Education is the biggest job we face. It is unknown to most Knights of Columbus and very few other Catholics have heard about it."
Knights from across Canada, United States and Mexico run a sculpted silver rose through the three nations. Three silver roses are run simultaneously. This year's run began in May in London, Ont., continuing through 31 jurisdictions and Mexico.
Moving through the West Coast area, central United States and the East Coast, all three roses will meet in Texas to travel over the International Bridge and be handed to knights in Monterrey, Mexico.
The silver rose made its way into Alberta June 12, delivered to Medicine Hat by Saskatchewan knights. The silver rose makes several stops in most major centres as well as in Lac Ste. Anne, Airdrie, Mayerthorpe, Wetaskiwin, Cold Lake and Mallaig. It will be handed over to British Columbia on July 3.
"Although it is labeled as a Silver Rose Run, we will not be running it through the province of Alberta. It will be run several blocks to the church where the prayer services will be held," said Boland.
The silver rose is in Edmonton June 30 and July 1.
Archbishop Richard Smith will attend a 4 p.m. prayer service at St. Joseph's Basilica on June 30. More prayer services are planned for Annunciation, St. Andrew, St. Theresa and St. Dominic Savio churches. Each service honours Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Boland said Catholics are called upon to be a people of life and a people for life.
"The challenge before us is to teach the world that the life of each human being, unique and unrepeatable, begins at the moment of conception and ends by natural death," he said.
"The Running of the Rose is a perfect program for the Knights of Columbus," said Supreme Knight Carl Anderson.
"Through it, we honour not only our Lady of Guadalupe and express the unity of the order, but we also reaffirm the order's dedication to the sanctity of human life."
The knights turn to the Blessed Mother in prayer as they work to end the culture of death that grips society. They think in terms of "one life, one rose."
The silver rose not only honours Our Lady of Guadalupe, but also expresses the unity of the Knights and reaffirms the order's dedication to the sanctity of human life. Participants turn to the Virgin Mary in prayer to end the culture of death that grips modern society.
The original rose was a natural rose that decomposed in the first year. Since 1961, a Mexican knight, Brother Miguel Martinez Montoya, has been making the roses out of silver.