Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas Gift

Every Easter and Christmas we "pass the collection basket" at our liturgies and the money is given to a cause or a ministry we select. The sisters can make suggestions for the collection and then the prioress and council select one.

This Christmas we chose Gannondale as the recipient. Gannondale is a resident facility for teenage girls placed there by the courts. It was founded 75 years ago by a group of Sisters of Charity at the request of the then-archbishop of Erie, John Mark Gannon. (Gannon University, Gannondale, Archbishop Gannon Scholarship program, etc).

The provincial of this group of Srs. of Charity is a St. Benedict Academy grad and basketball teammate of many of our sisters who played for the Lassies in the late 50s. The current administrator is one of our oblates and a former high school student of mine--great gal: bright, funny, capable and a longtime Gannondale employee--totally dedicated to their mission.

The financial crisis has deeply affected non-profits such as Gannondale, as a large portion of their funding comes from private donations and the state of Pennsylvania--whose budget was held up for months--delayed way beyond the ability of many small state-funded groups to survive.

Around the altar.

The Dickens Village in the dining room.