On Sunday The Fleet Will Be Blessed


St. Raphael’s will hold its regular Sunday Service at 10 AM at the Erickson and Jensen Shrimp docks (1100 Shrimpboat Lane off Main Street).  The Blessing Service will take place at 11 AM.

This is a short service of prayers, songs, and readings followed by the Blessing of the Fleet where Reverend Rowe will walk along the docks and personally bless each boat.

After the Blessing, St. Raphael’s will be serving its famous peel and eat shrimp.

Thank you to Ellie Bunting from the Estero Island Historical Society for sharing these classic photos.

She says the first picture below is of the Blessing back in the 60s when all kinds of clergy wanting to come down and participate. “The Blessing itself was usually held either on a boat or on the pier. The shrimp boats would be decorated and would go past the pier for their Blessing.  At times there would be 40 boats participating.”

Ellie tells us the second picture shows the crowd of people watching from the beach.  “When the price of shrimp declined and the cost of gas increased, the captains no longer wanted to take the boats out on the water for the Blessing.  Then we started going to the docks to do the Blessing.”




  1. The old Picture is with a Catholic Bishop and Catholic Priests! Is St. Raphael Catholic too? Is. Rev Rowe giving the blessing in the Catholic faith?

  2. Love seeing these historic photos and learning about the past traditions. Thank you to the Estero Island Historic Society.


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