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National Eucharistic Pilgrimage Film Series - Emmett is second Idaho stop on National Eucharistic Pilgrimage

by Vero Gutíerrez

Assistant Editor

The following story appeared in the March 8 Idaho Catholic Register.


EMMETT — For Father Oscar Jaramillo, pastor of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, it was a surprise to learn his parish would be hosting the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage because it coincided with his last days at the parish before his retirement after 16 years of service.

Father Oscar explained that the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage is an unprecedented event and a great blessing for Idaho. “And it was unexpected news that made my retirement even more meaningful.”

The Pilgrimage will arrive in Emmett on May 28. Emmett is a small town of 8,000 in Gem County on the lower middle reaches of the Payette River. Father Oscar Jaramillo will receive the Blessed Sacrament from the national pilgrims on the corner of Washington Avenue and 12th Street at 10:30 a.m.

At 11:00 a.m., the national pilgrims, the Sacred Heart Catholic Church community, and those of neighboring parishes will walk approximately one mile to Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish at 211 E. 1st Street. Father Jaramillo invites all the members of neighboring parishes to join the Sacred Heart community on the one-mile walk and participate in

all activities at the parish. The route is flat and safe for people of all ages.

At noon, the parish will host a Holy Hour led by Father Jaramillo and Deacons Alan Shaber and Chris Roeper. The Holy Hour will include a reflection on the sixth chapter of the Gospel of John, with breaks for silent prayer.

After the Holy Hour, at 1:00 p.m., a social will begin in the Sacred Heart Parish Hall to share experiences and offer refreshments to the pilgrims and all visitors before departing for Boise, where pilgrims are scheduled to arrive at 5:00 p.m.

Father Jaramillo noted everyone at the parish in Emmett is excited to receive the national pilgrimage, especially the Adoration group. “Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is the devotion that characterizes this parish most,” said Father Jaramillo.

“Since my arrival in 2008, Adoration has been the spiritual activity of the parish that I found the best organized, and therefore, it continues to be one of the most faithful spiritual ministries of the parish. Under the direction of Anita Baltazor, this group meets every Wednesday and has been able to attract many parishioners with their prayers. They have a great commitment to prayer and a special devotion to Christ in the Eucharist.”

Father Jaramillo explained the entire community of Sacred Heart is full of joy, knowing they have been chosen to receive their Lord and the special group walking the Serra Route during the National Eucharistic Pilgrimage. In preparation for this historic moment, the parish is reading Matthew Kelly’s Lenten devotional book, “Beautiful Eucharist,” which they received on Ash Wednesday.

Pilgrims walking the four national routes will begin their journeys during Pentecost and walk with Jesus across the country for approximately two months. The Serra Route, coming from the west of the nation, will travel through Idaho between May 27 and May 31. The four pilgrimage routes will meet in Indianapolis on July 16 where the National Eucharistic Congress will be held from July 17–July 21, 2024. The Serra Route is named for the “Apostle of California,” St. Junipero Serra.

Emmett’s first Catholic house of worship was the St. Anthony Mission, completed on March 25, 1890. Thirty-seven years later, in 1927, the mission became a parish, and its first resident pastor, Father Michael Keyes, purchased new land and built a 160 by 35 foot church, completed in 1929. The cost was $10,000. Bishop Edward Joseph Kelly dedicated the new church on September 19 of that year, naming it Sacred Heart. Nearly 100 years later, Sacred Heart Catholic Church, which seats 200, continues to minister to the Catholic community in Emmett.

Father Oscar Jaramillo, who has served at Sacred Heart since 2008, will retire in June. He

was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Boise by Bishop Tod D. Brown on June 8, 1990, at Saint John’s Cathedral. He served in many Idaho parishes during his 34 years of active parish ministry and on many diocesan commissions. The Idaho Catholic Register will profile Father Jaramillo in an upcoming issue closer to his retirement date.

If you enjoyed this story and would like to read more like it, please consider buying a subscription to the Idaho Catholic Register. Your $20 yearly subscription also supports the work of the Diocese of Boise Communications Department, which includes not only the newspaper, but this website, social media posts and videos. You can subscribe here, or through your parish, or send a check to 1501 S. Federal Way, Boise, ID, 83705: or call 208-350-7554 to leave a credit card payment. Thank you, and God bless you.

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