Saturday, March 30, 2013

Centuries Old Easter Traditions Alive in Salem

Today the faithful parishioners of St. John the Baptist Parrish on St. Peter street took part in a centuries old Easter tradition of blessing of the food. On Holy Saturday, the Saturday before Easter, Polish Catholics put together baskets of a sampling of the foods to be eaten on Easter Sunday, take it to their parish where the parish priest blesses the food.

At the ceremony Rev. Msgr. Stanislaw Parfienczyk, reads prayers to bless the bread, eggs and meat. 

Then the baskets are sprinkled with Holy water. 

The ceremony concludes with a few general prayers and comments from the Priest.

What kinds of things are brought to church?

Here is a list of what is generally placed in the baskets and what they symbolize:

  • White napkin or cloth which symbolizes the shroud placed on Jesus as he lay in the tomb
  • A Lamb, which can be made of any material generally molded in butter or sugar. This symbolizes Jesus, the Pascal lamb
  • Hard boiled eggs that symbolizes new life
  • Bread which represents the bread of life given by God
  • Meat and Kielbasa which symbolizes the resurrection of Christ
  • Horseradish that symbolizes accepting the bitter and the sweet in life
  • Salt which adds zest to life and and preserves us from corruption
  • Candy which symbolizes the promise of eternal life or good things to come

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas Services in Salem 2012

Here is a list compiled from the churches website of what services there are in Salem, Massachusetts.

If we've missed anything drop us a line and we will gladly add it to our list

Immaculate Conception     

12/24/12 04:00 PM Family Mass with Choir
        11:00 PM Midnight Mass
12/25/12 10:00 AM
                        01:00 PM Spanish
Ste. Anne

12/24/12 04:00 PM
                  06:00 PM
12/25/12 12:00 AM
                09:00 AM

St. James          

12/24/12 04:00 PM Family Mass with Pageant
                        07:00 PM Christmas Eve Mass with Adult Choir 
12/25/12 07:30 AM
                10:15 PM
St. John the Baptist

12/24/12 04:00 PM  Children Mass (Bilingual Polish/English)
        10:00 PM  (Bilingual Polish/English)
12/25/12 10:00 AM  Polish
                        11:30: AM

Grace Church      

12/24/12 10:30 PM Candlelight Service
12/25/12 10:00 AM
St. Peter         

12/24/12 04:00 PM Family Mass with Pageant
                11:00 PM
12/25/12 10:00 AM Spanish
The First Church of Salem  

12/24/12 07:00 PM  Christmas Eve Lessons & Carols Candlelight Service 
First Universalist Society   

12/24/12 07:00 PM
Wesley United    

12/24/12 06:00 PM Candlelight Service
Tabernacle Congregational 

12/24/12 04:00 PM  Family Mass
                        07:00 PM

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Our view on Ballot Question 4 (CPA)

While we here at the Salem Archives like to stay politically neutral, we feel however that ballot questions are largely an apolitical issue.

After reading both sides of the issue in the local media as well as opinions of fellow Salem residents in the local newspapers, we've determined that we cannot support the question. We ask that you vote no when you go to the polls on Tuesday, November 6.

While there are some good intentions in the spirit of the program, we believe that with the economy as it is we can not support what is essentially a self induced tax increase. There is no problem with the city of Salem looking to do more historic and open space preservation. We do however have problems with the low income housing component as well as the finding mechanism. In the 10 years of the program, matching state funds have been cut by nearly 75% leaving cities to largely collect only from residents. If the city if Salem privately fund raised for these projects we would wholeheartedly support them.

We do not support the city of Salem in its attempt to have us raise our own taxes, therefor we ask that you join us in voting NO on Question 4.

Thank you,
The Salem Archives Team

Friday, August 17, 2012

Brigadier General Albin F Irzyk Autograph

The latest addition to the Salem Collection Archives is a Brigadier General Albin F Irzyk signed index card. It was generously donated to the collection by the General himself. 

It's not usually our policy to send out unsolicited requests for autographs and the like from people, but we tried and our request was granted. We are very pleased to have an autograph of a native of Salem who has held one of the highest offices in the military that anyone in the nearly 400 year history of Salem has.

Brig. Gen. Albin F Irzyk grew up on Derby st in Salem, was a star athlete in College. He later entered the US Army. As a Lieutenant Colonel in WWII he became the commanding officer of the 8th tank battalion, 4th Armored Division in General Patton's 3rd army. He was wounded twice in WWII and received the Distinguished Service Medal. He then went on to serve in Vietnam. The park on Fort Avenue in Salem was dedicated in his honor in 1999.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

World War II Civil Defense Helmet

This civil defense helmet that recently came into the collection is an interesting piece.

It belonged to Edward Judkins who lived at 3 Buffum St. during WWII. As it turns out from 1944 onwards he became the sealer of weights and measures for the city if Salem. Which probably explains why he would be part of the civil defense for Salem, working for the city and all.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Always Looking For New Salem Items

As you may know the goal of The Salem Archives is to preserve Salem's past and present for the future. So, starting today we are appealing to everyone from near and far to help with our goal.

If you are renovating your home, cleaning your house out or otherwise stumble upon some artifacts from Salem's past, no matter how obscure, remember we are interested in preserving your finds.

Help us keep these treasures out of the landfill and preserved for future generations.

Donations are always appreciated and we do buy items too.

If you have something you think is right for us, Tweet us @SalemArchives or use the following link:

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Salem Police Badge

A few weeks ago an old Salem Police badge was added to the collection. This afternoon in the mail I got a reply from Chief Tucker about the badge. The only information ha had about the badge is that they were used up to 20-22 years ago, when they switched to the current issue badge. He also said some of the older officers were using them 30 years ago, when he joined the force.

I'd also like to thank Chief Tucker for replying to my letter, as well as the gracious gift of this newly minted Salem Police Department "Challenge" Coin.