Biloxi's Blessing Of The Fleet

BILOXI (WLOX) --  "Our blessing begins with the dropping of the wreath which is to remember those who have died on the waters and to entrust them to the love and mercy of God," said Archbishop Thomas Rodi.

After honoring the fishermen who have passed away more than 30 boats lined up to get their blessing from Archbishop Rodi.

"Today is our annual Blessing of the Fleet, which is a prayer to God to protect those who make their living on the waters and to bless them with an abundant harvest," Archbishop Rodi said.

Success is what these fishermen are hoping for, and some believe it will take a miracle to be successful especially in the wake of the challenges they face this season.

"Of course, we know that the seafood industry is facing a lot of challenges with imports, insurance and the price of fuel," Archbishop Rodi said.

This year marked the 79th Annual Blessing of the Fleet in Biloxi.

"It's an old tradition that goes back centuries back to Europe and a tradition we have celebrated here in Biloxi for many decades," Archbishop Rodi said.

Archbishop Rodi says this is the biggest turnout since Katrina.

Now that they have their blessing, South Mississippi shrimpers can once again drop their nets as many of their forefathers did, with the same hope their forefathers had, for an abundant harvest and safe season.