A New Principal, Diocesan Honors
Two significant personnel changes marked the year 2006. Mrs. Donna Bacsik was appointed by Bishop Smith as Associate Director of Catholic Education for Elementary Schools for the Diocese of Trenton. She was succeeded by Mrs. Teresa Carrick of Howell, NJ. The Director of Pastoral Outreach, Mrs. Jean Pierfy retired and moved to South Carolina with her husband, Deacon Jeffrey Pierfy and daughter. She was succeeded by Mrs. Joan Bartolomei.
The music ministry under the direction of Donival Brown was kept busy. On April 9, Gabriel Favre’s Requiem was presented –a joint venture of the parish, St. Gregory the Great Parish, St. Mark’s Methodist Church and the Diocese of Trenton Festival Choir. This concert benefitted AIDS patients in Uganda. On April 30 Chamber Music of Mozart was presented for the benefit of youth programs in Uganda. Mr. Brown also brought together many parishioners and friends for the performance of My Fair Lady on October 13-15. A Messiah Sing would mark the Advent Season.
Advent also saw the dedication of the new front doors of St. Anthony Church on Sunday, March 26 in memory of Msgr. Joseph Ferrante, pastor of St. Anthony Parish from 1992-1999. At the same campus, the parking lot was resurfaced and new sidewalks were installed.
The parish, under the auspices of the “Social Justice-Social Concerns Committee” sponsored a number of annual charitable projects. During Advent, parishioners are invited to “Adopt a Family” for Christmas. During Lent, support is sought for our “sister Diocese” of Kasana-Luweero, Uganda. (The 2006 project was entitled Choose Water Wednesdays which encouraged all to sacrifice soft drinks and to donate the money saved to the construction of a well in Uganda.) During the summer, all are invited to prepare and serve meals to the poor at the Cathedral, an outreach called “Loaves and Fishes.”
Financial support of the parish continues to be augmented by weekly Bingo and an annual Golf Classic. An annual picnic is held in September, providing a time of fun, good food and fellowship. “Community building” is helped by the monthly “Welcome Sunday” (known as “St Martha Sunday”) at St. Anthony Church, when parishioners gather for coffee and light breakfast after Mass. This first year of the parish also saw formation of an Our Lady of Sorrows Alumni Association, which has been encouraged by Fr. Garrett Fitzgerald. As a fundraiser—the group held a Greaseband Concert at Cedar Gardens in Hamilton on October 6.
During 2006, the parish enjoyed a moment in the national “limelight” when its native son, Judge Samuel Alito was confirmed as the 110th Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Local honor was accorded to parishioners, Desmond Murphy and Erin Vanderhoof during the festivities marking the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade that commences from the steps of St. Anthony Church.