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Sunday, July 23, 2017, Priest Gabriel Bilas and the faithful of Saint Mary Magdalene Church hosted local first responders and their families at the annual blessing of their emergency vehicles, after which a fellowship cookout was held.
“In attendance were 15 first responders and their families from the Fenton Fire Department, the Fenton Police Department, and the Livingston Country Sherriff’s Department, as well as first responders from the Grand Blanc area,” Father Gabriel said. “They brought their fire trucks and police vehicles, including police motorcycles, to the annual blessing.”
In keeping with the ancient customs of the original Christian Church, explained Father Gabriel, vehicles are blessed every year in July in honor of the feast of the Prophet Elijah, who ascended to heaven in a fiery chariot.
“Our parish is humbled by the overwhelming response and love that came from our community heroes,” Father Gabriel added. “It is so important for our community to pray for and recognize all of our first responders—the police and fire departments who keep us safe from the vicious acts of the devil. In a society that has slowly begun to vilify our first responders, most especially our local police, we wanted them to know that a majority of our local community loves them, respects them, and will always be praying for their safety as they continue to protect and serve us.”