Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As you may have noticed with the many announcements and ads (that have only just begun), this September Notre Dame will be hosting its first ever Fall Festival! A number of parishioners and I were musing on how Notre Dame doesn’t really have a big fun event that brings the parish together and builds community. So we put together a committee, and that committee has been working hard to plan what is shaping up to be an awesome event on Saturday, September 28th (rain date Saturday, October 5th) from 11 am to 3 pm.
To fill you in on the details, it will be an event that should be fun for all ages. In one parking lot we will have an area set up for children. There will be a bouncy castle, popcorn and cotton candy, pumpkin painting, and all sorts of games. In the auditorium we will have tables set up with raffles and games. In a second parking lot we will have an adult area complete with a local German restaurant grilling brats and burgers, beer and wine, grown-up lawn games like Kan Jam and cornhole, and live music. And by popular demand, there will be a dunk tank… and I have been recruited to get in. So if for no other reason, come to get out all your frustration with the pastor!
Before I make any requests of you, I would like to assure you first and foremost that my hope for this event is that it truly is a community building event. As much as I love when everyone comes to the parish for a faith-based event, and as much as we need fundraisers, it’s just as important that we come together in putting on an event like this and have some fun along the way. Working side by side, playing side by side, it forges bonds on the human level that can be brought to the supernatural level through a shared faith. Something that saddens me about parish life in our world today is that we function just like any other vendor or merchant: people come to the Church for Sacraments and leave without connecting to another soul. So like the Multicultural Festival, this event will hopefully continue to lay the foundation for a strong network of relationships here at Notre Dame, where no one is a stranger, no one feels like another number, but rather where everyone feels like a member of a family of faith.
I do have two requests though, as an event like this does require a great deal of preparation. First, I ask you to consider volunteering to help out at the event. The more volunteers we have, the smoother the event will go and the more we can spread out the responsibilities – many hands make light work! And as much as we need the help, it’s also a great opportunity to connect with and get to know parishioners whom you might see every week and yet have never met. Second, I ask you to consider bringing the sponsorship form to any businesses or families that you think may be interested. The event will have costs and my hope is to defray them all with these donations. We will be advertising for these businesses on our fence on New Hyde Park Rd, a very highly traveled thoroughfare, so I hope that this is an added incentive for them.
Thank you for all your generosity and support of the parish, and thank you in advance for helping make the Fall Festival a great event. I can’t wait! But until then, I’ll be on the hunt for a bathing cassock.
Yours in Christ,