Pilgrimage draws hundreds to Centralia

Centralia churchCENTRALIA – Centralia was a busy community again Sunday morning as a pilgrimage ended at the Ukrainian Catholic church—which is still active and home to a handful of worshippers. The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church was full once again Sunday as priests and Archbishop Stefan Soroka of Philadelphia led the service.

While Centralia is all but abandoned (and a social media tourism touchstone), the church is active and had several hundred worshipers Sunday. Officially declared holy pilgrimage site, the church hosted a full day of activities. The church has about 50 parishioners but an estimated 200 people visiting Sunday.

Confessions were heard throughout the day, and the services ended with a candlelight procession back into the church for a solemn prayer service. A pilgrimage is a Catholic tradition of naming sites and holy days as opportunities for deeper faith and worship.

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