, Salem, MA

December 31, 2013

Letter: Thanks due for St. Richard’s celebrations

The Salem News

---- — To the editor:

As fall brought the turning of the leaves, as November brought its early darkness, as December’s winter chilled our bones, the 50th anniversary celebration at St. Richard’s provided heartfelt joy.

The sounds of children’s laughter filled the parish hall as families came together for a fun night of Family Candy Bingo on Oct. 18. After filling up on Rocco’s Pizza, Joe Amari provided the bingo calling with Skittles and jelly beans as markers. An ice cream sundae bar finished off the night. Thanks go out to Rocco’s Pizza, volunteers Jeff and Marianne Goding, Kathy and Dave Gannon, Altie and Jack Nichols, Joe and Michele Amari, and Mary Roach’s sixth-grade CCD class. A special thank-you to chairmen Sandra Ciruolo and Cathy Marerro.

On Oct. 20, St. Richard hosted an Inspiration Concert, Music from the Heart, featuring the talented St. Richard music ministry under the direction of Brenda Myers. Standing ovations culminated this two-hour, free, mixed-genre program. Thank you to our chairmen, Kathy Knowles and Josephine Stafferi, along with their committee, Donna and Jim McCarriston, Jan Pagano, Gisele Adams and Maryann Baker; to Altie Nichols and Evie Fraser for decorating the church; DCAT for taping the event; and programs by John Call and North Shore Technical High School.

On Saturday, Nov. 17, we came together as a parish to celebrate our 50th Anniversary Gala with extraordinary elegance! During the evening, we heard over and over again “what a great time this is.” Anna Bertini and Mary Jalbert worked for months to make the gala the special night that it was. Sincere thanks to Gala Committee members, DCAT Cable TV and our parishioners for their support.

Our Christmas spirits were lifted on Dec. 8 as we thoroughly enjoyed the third annual Sounds of the Holiday concert, featuring the North Shore Philharmonic under the direction of Robert Lehman. The concert was a true message of the season, one of love and compassion. Thank you to our sponsors, Living Legacy Financial Group, C.R. Lyons & Sons funeral directors and St. Richard’s Parish. The greatest joy of the night, however, was the display of generosity from each patron whose donation to the Danvers People-to-People Food Pantry helps makes sure that someone less fortunate has a reason for hope. Thank you, Boy Scout Troop 155 and St. John’s Prep National Honor Society for their handling of the food, Moore GMC for transporting the food, Altie Nichols, Kathy Gannon and their committee for decorating the church, to DCAT Cable TV for taping the event, Father Bruce Flannagan and the Parish Council for their support, People-to People Food Pantry for being there for everybody, the parishioners of St. Richard Parish, and a special thanks to chairmen John Call, Gary DeStefano and Ray Gallant.

Through our continuing collaboration with DCAT Cable TV, St. Richard Parish, starting on Dec. 9 and running through the end of February, will be sharing Moments of Gratitude with excerpts from “Attitudes of Gratitude” by M. J. Ryan. Produced by John Call and narrated by Betsy Geheb, these five-minute segments will run each day during the regular DCAT program schedule.

As our 50th anniversary starts to wind down, we invite you to join us for our Pancake Breakfast on Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. in our church hall and our concluding Mass at 11 a.m.

Betsy Geheb

Chairman, 50th Anniversary Committee

St. Richard Parish