Tens of thousands anticipated for annual Marian Days celebration at Christ Cathedral
The event on July 14 and 15 is expected to bring 20,000 of the faithful, particularly Vietnamese Catholics, for a festival-like environment of worship, workshops, entertainment and a procession onto the streets.
GARDEN GROVE, Calif. (June 14, 2023) — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange will host its second annual Marian Days celebration on July 14 and 15, a celebration around Christ Cathedral that has quickly become the largest of its kind on the West Coast.
Over two days, the 34-acre cathedral campus will draw as many as 20,000 of the faithful from around the region and the country for a festival-like environment of outdoor Masses, a procession onto the streets, workshops, dancing, live music and entertainment. As Marian Days grows in popularity, the Diocese expects this year’s event to surpass last year’s estimated attendee count of 15,000.
Marian Days 2023 has a “With Mary, We Journey” theme, reflecting the central role of the Virgin Mary in the Catholic faith.
“Participants will truly walk together in faith at Marian Days through celebrating Mass, hearing the keynote speakers and visiting our magnificent Our Lady of La Vang Shrine,” said Bishop Kevin Vann. “We invite the whole People of God to walk together to discern the Lord’s will for his Church, and we are called to journey together with Mary in this process. We go forth with her to live and share the Good News with others.”
In addition to coverage of Marian Days on July 14 and 15, members of the media are invited to visit the Christ Cathedral campus’ Large Gallery on June 28 at 9 a.m. to hear Bishop Thanh Thai Nguyen and others talk about Marian Days. Interview opportunities will be made available.
Members of the media are asked to RSVP by contacting Jarryd Gonzales, head of communications, at [email protected] and (714) 282-3075 or Bradley Zint, assistant director of communications, at [email protected] and (714) 282-6052.
Marian Days background
The Diocese of Orange’s celebration was modeled after the annual Marian Days of Carthage, Missouri. That pilgrimage-style festival has been in place since 1978, drawing tens of thousands of attendees, particularly Vietnamese Catholics, to the Midwest to honor the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The inaugural Diocese of Orange Marian Days in 2022 drew an estimated 15,000 people over two days. Like last year event, this year’s will be centered around the cathedral’s Our Lady of La Vang Shrine. The shrine’s centerpiece is a 12-foot-tall Virgin Mary statue depicting how the Blessed Mother is believed to have appeared before a group of persecuted Vietnamese Catholics in 1798 in a rainforest of Vietnam.
Since its blessing in 2021, the Our Lady of La Vang Shrine has been a major source of reverence, joy and inspiration to Christ Cathedral campus visitors. The shrine hosts monthly Masses and other observances, particularly for Orange County’s large Vietnamese Catholic community.
For a complete schedule of events, please visit https://melavang-oc.org.
For Media: Major Visuals
(Editor’s note: For an idea of what Marian Days looks like, please view our 2022 highlight reel on YouTube.)
5:30 p.m., July 14: Commencement ceremony for Marian Days 2023 in front of the Our Lady of La Vang Shrine.
7 p.m., July 14: Opening Mass with thousands of attendees. Main celebrant is Bishop Oscar Cantú of the Diocese of San Jose.
8 a.m., July 15: Morning Healing Mass in front of the Our Lady of La Vang Shrine with Bishop Thanh Thai Nguyen.
4 p.m., July 15: Rosary procession around the Christ Cathedral campus and onto the streets. As many as 5,000 to 7,000 people are expected to participate.
6 p.m., July 15: Prelude and liturgical dance with 200+ dancers.
7 p.m., July 15: Mass with Bishop Kevin Vann, Bishop Thanh Thai Nguyen, hundreds of singers and a full orchestra.
On-site, Day-of Contacts for Marian Days
Assistant Director of Communications Bradley Zint
[email protected], (657) 390-3914
Head of Communications Jarryd Gonzales
[email protected], (714) 282-3075
Press Credentials for Marian Days
What: Press credentials are required to cover the Diocese of Orange’s Marian Days at Christ Cathedral for reporting, videography and photography.
When: Credentials can be picked up at the June 28 media preview day or during Marian Days on July 14 and 15.
Where: Christ Cathedral campus, 13280 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove CA 92840
Marian Days Media Preview Day
What: Members of the media are invited to visit the campus in advance of Marian Days to hear Bishop Thanh Thai Nguyen, cathedral rector Fr. Bao Thai and others talk about the two-day event and its inspiration. Interview opportunities will be available.
When: 9 a.m. June 28, 2023
Where: Large Gallery, Christ Cathedral campus, 13280 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove CA 92840
RSVPs: Please contact Head of Communications Jarryd Gonzales at [email protected], (714) 282-3075
About the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange
With 1.3 million Catholics, 57 parishes, five Catholic centers and 35 schools, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange is one of the largest and most diverse faith communities in the United States. The Diocese empowers Catholics across Orange County to have an active life of faith that is integrated and woven into the fabric of their daily lives through the community and sacramental life of the Church. Under the leadership of Bishop Kevin Vann, the Diocese works to establish and support dynamic, vibrant parishes and schools welcoming all to live the Gospel with faith, joy, charity and unity. Christ Cathedral, the spiritual home of the Bishop of Orange, was dedicated in July 2019. Learn more about the Diocese of Orange at www.rcbo.org.