View from the Pastoral Centre, Stella Maris Pastoral Unit, West Arichat, NS

"Gloire soit au Père et au Fils et au Saint-Esprit, comme il était au commencement, est maintenant et toujours sera, monde sans fin. Amen."
Glory be to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.



The Acadians have populated our province and our diocese since the 1630s. Their expertise in trades, farming, fishing and land reclamation, and their collaborative friendship with the M'ikmaki built thriving communities that fuelled the economic and social growth of our region. Le Grand Dérangement of 1755, in which British government soldiers forced thousands of Acadians onto ships and into exile, decimated the Acadian population but not its spirit. Some hid to avoid capture. Others spent years returning to their homelands to find their land claimed and resettled by the British. They built new settlements. Still others returned generations later and today, Acadian communities remain a destination for the thousands of descendents of those original settlers. 



Our Lady of the Assumption
is the Patron Saint of the Acadians.
The Virgin Mary and Mother of Jesus was selected
as patron saint by the first delegation of
the National Acadian Convention in 1881. 

The star in the Acadian Flag represents Our Lady
and the star of the sea that guides sailors home
through stormy seas


calendar banner

August 15 is the Feast of the Assumption
and celebrated by Acadians worldwide as
Fête nationale de l'Acadie/National Acadian Day.  

July 28 is also an important date in Acadian culture, 
declared as the Day of Commemoration of Le Grand Dérangement of 1755. 
It is not a celebration, but rather a day to remember and reflect. On this anniversary, at 17h55 (5:55 pm), church bells ring as a sign of respect.




Also at 92.5 FM in Pomquet
and 97.5 FM in Sydney.

Listen live via the web:



Broadcasting from Petit de Grat 



A view into Acadian culture,
genealogy resource centre and library, and more



 125 years of Église Ste-Pierre, Chéticamp
inks to CBC Radio, Cardinal Lacroix's homily
from the Anniversary Mass, and more










 Eglise Sainte-Pierre in Chéticamp houses a small museum of the life and times of Fr. Pierre Fiset, circa 1900. Fr Fiset served as pastor from 1875 until his death in 1918. The current church was built in 1982-93 during his pastorate. 


  Slide16CBishopsLandryMorrison 1943 copy

Bishop George Landry, 
with Bishop James Morrison circa 1943. 
Bishop Landry was the first Acadian priest of Antigonish Diocese 
to be ordained in the Diocese of Antigonish





Our Diocesan History
began on July 15, 1844 when the Roman Curia created the Diocese of Antigonish. 
The diocese included the northern mainland of Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island. 

The first seat of the diocese was Arichat.
Our first bishop, Bishop William Fraser, administered the Diocese of Arichat from Our Lady of Assumption Cathedral, built in 1837 before our diocese was formed. 

St. Francis Xavier University was also born in Arichat.
The university was founded in 1853 by Bishop Colin F. MacKinnon, our second bishop.
Bishop MacKinnon saw a diocesan seminary and college as a way to build and strengthen this new diocese.


Bishop MacKinnon's desk,
displayed in the Pastoral Centre, Stella Maris Pastoral Unit, West Arichat

The need to protect this newer, smaller diocese from possible absorption by neighbouring seats caused subsequent church officials to seek a mainland seat for our diocese. In 1886, the name was changed to Diocese of Antigonish and the seat moved to St. Ninian Cathedral in Antigonish.
Arichat remains the historical root of our diocese and an important chapter in our diocesan story. 


Our Diocese today
includes five Acadian parishes:

Our Lady of Assumption, Arichat

St-Pierre, Chéticamp

St-Joseph, Petit de Grat

Ste Croix, Pomquet

St-Joseph, St. Joseph du Moine

These parishes continue to contribute to the spiritual, canonical and cultural fabric of our diocese


Cardinal Gerald Lacroix learns of Cheticamp rug hooking during his visit
in honour of the parish's 125th Anniversary

Slide4ABishopVernonFougere copy 

Fr. Vernon Fougere of Petit de Grat 
ministered in Latin America 
before becoming Bishop of Charlottetown in 1991


The Ali family moved to Isle Madame from Syria in 2016,
sponsored by the Stella Maris Pastoral Unit


"Je vous salue, Marie, pleine de grâce. 

Le Seigneur est avec vous. 

Vous êtes bénie entre toutes les femmes, et Jésus, le fruit de vos entrailles, est béni. 

Sainte Marie, mère de Dieu, priez pour nous pauvres pêcheurs, maintenant et à l'heure de notre mort. 

Ainsi soit-il."

Hail Mary, Full of Grace.
The Lord is with you.
Blessed are you among women and Blessed is the Fruit of your Womb, Jesus..
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.

"O mon Jésus, pardonne-nous nos péchés, préserve-nous du feu de l'enfer et conduis au ciel toutes les petit âmes surtout celles qui ont le plus besoin de ta miséricorde. Amen."

O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell.
Lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.