T he 4 o' clock mass at Saint Joseph and Saint Patrick Church in Utica was different today, as parishioners went out to honor one of their own, Saint Marianne Cope.
Father Richard Dellos said a prayer in front of his church before the ceremony this evening. "It was quite exciting for these people to see St. Marianne's name on that street sign. After all most people don't get that opportunity to have a street named after them," says Dellos.
The newly re-named street sits right next to the school at Saint Joseph's Church where Saint Marianne went as a little girl. The new street name gives members of the parish a new sense of pride.
Albert Zeina and Doris Yager are both members of this community. "Why go to Jerusalem? Go to Holy Land in Utica. Utica is a wonderful city, it's a beautiful city. We're really proud to have a saint from Utica," says Zeina.
"My children will say, that's the same classroom I was in. She was in it before me! It's a thrill and I think it's a wonderful thing for the area that we do have a saint," says Yager.
Calling the new section of Varick Street "Saint Marianne Way" has a particular meaning to some, such as Ellen Benton who helped organize today's ceremony.
"Jesus is the way, the truth and the life, so it is perfect that we use the word way instead of road or street or avenue," says Benton.
The unveiling of the new street sign also marks the 95th anniversary of Saint Marianne;s death, a sign that her life will always be celebrated here on the streets of Utica.