Once again, festival time has arrived! This year’s festival marks a very special occasion for our parish, that being, the 60th anniversary of our parish festival. I can only imagine the early days of the festival that began as a bazaar in the basement of the church. I have enjoyed hearing many stories about those early days…the booths that were separated by curtains, and how the ladies would prepare their favorite dishes in their homes and sell them at the bazaar. Those early days were a time of excitement, commitment and an abundance of joy for the parish. I could remember as a young boy over 50 years ago, that attending the festival was our family tradition. Looking back, I realize that it was a nice time for my mom because she didn’t have to cook for a few days.
I am truly convinced that the passion and commitment of those parishioners who served at the very first festival some 60 years ago, is alive and well in our parish today. We have a multitude of parishioners, both young and old, committed to making our diamond anniversary festival the best one ever through the giving of their time, talent and treasure.
I believe most of us would agree that over the last several years we have made great gains in the appearance of our church grounds and improvements to our facilities. We are a parish on the move! This is due in a great part to our commitment to the spirit of stewardship our parish family has embraced whole heartedly. Our parish festival is our largest fundraiser of the year and has funded many of the improvements we all have enjoyed.
With God’s help, this year’s festival will set the mark that leads us into the next 60 years. Guided by the leadership of our pastor, Fr. Mike, many new and innovative changes have been made to make our parish festival one to be extremely proud of. Just to mention a few changes, this year we will have electronic ordering and credit card payments, a gourmet coffee and popcorn shop and an enhanced food menu including grilled chicken salad, Avalon Brier Hill pizza, all sandwiches served on bakery fresh bread, and stuffed cabbage and haluski prepared the “old world” way. The BBQ pavilion will rival the best BBQ restaurants around, featuring grilled kielbasa, authentic Greek gyros, lamb, chicken and rib dinners cooked over an open fire and as always, Fr. Mike’s famous steak hoagies that will be served on the midway.
Please save these dates, August 2, 3, 4, and 5. Invite your family, friends and neighbors to join in this year’s 60th anniversary of our St. Pat’s festival. May we continue to embrace our call to live a life of stewardship as we serve Jesus Christ and Mother Church. See you at this year’s festival.
God bless you,
Deacon John Bartos, Director of Stewardship