St-Isidore is normally a quiet village on a Sunday morning without much heavy traffic. But on April 14, the streets were jammed with a procession of tractors making its way to the community centre for the annual Blessing of the Tractors and Seeds.
More than 20 tractors, excavators, and all terrain vehicles from the surrounding area parked, some with sacks of seed placed on their front bumpers to be blessed with faith for a good growing season ahead on local farms.
Father Pascal Nizigyimana of St-Isidore parish said a brief opening prayer and then walked around and sprinkled holy water on the tractors and seed sacks.
The blessing coincided with Passion Sunday in the Catholic Church, also known as Palm Sunday, when holy water is usually sprinkled on the congregation assembled at mass.
This was the fourth year for the blessing event, which is organized by Knights of Columbus Council 6237 of St-Isidore and Fournier.
Organizer Laurent Souligny, who is also a local cash crop, egg, and maple sugar producer, said he got the idea after finding out similar blessing events exist for trucks, motorcycles, and boats, and read about a tractor blessing in a magazine.
For a community like St-Isidore, blessing tractors and seeds made the most sense.
“In our area here, the biggest thing we have is agriculture,” Souligny said.
He emphasized that the blessing is inter-denominational, and all farmers are welcome to bring their tractors and seeds.
“They’re all one,” said Souligny.
After the blessing, those in attendance gathered in the community centre for mass. The parish church in St-Isidore is currently being rebuilt after being destroyed by fire in 2017.