Lodge 81 April News
Lodge 81 warmed the hearts of many during the winter months with various parish and community activities.
Monthly birthday recognition coffee socials included many Lodge 81 members. In February Gerry Dorobish, Theresa Petruska, Janet Gaydos and Bonnie Balas were honored and in March Stephen Petruska. The St. John Parish “Fasengy” was held on February 23 prior to the beginning of Lent. Lodge 81 volunteers for the event included: Joan Bridges, Bonnie Balas, Cathy Philips, and Janet Gaydos.
Lodge 81 officers who also serve as ECF instructors James Mihalko and Bonnie Balas had their students prepare crosses to be blessed in church for the 3rd Sunday of the Great Fast – Veneration of the Precious Cross on March 15. James & Bonnie readied the crosses which were made by a parishioner, Kay Breakiron. Then on February 29 and March 1 all instructors assisted the students in painting them.
Throughout the Great Fast GCU members were involved in parish actvities. Helen Ponzurick, Bonnie Balas, and Bernadette Karaffa with pirohi making and Stephen Petruska with cantoring of weekend Presanctified Gifts Liturgies. Bonnie Balas and Cathy Phillips also assisted with the weekly bake sales during the Friday “Pirohi” lunches.
Lodge 81 sponsored a collection for the Souper Bowl of Caring from January 31-February 2 before and after Divine Liturgies. Monies collected were donated to the local St. Vincent dePaul Society Food Bank.
Yearly pysanky classes offered to the community at St. John Church were held on Mondays during the Great Fast for 4 weeks with Bonnie Balas as instructor. Joan Bridges and Mark Jesko also assisted with the 20+ students who attended wanting to learn the art of pysanky.
On March 8 the Sisters of St. Basil held an open house to celebrate a century of ministry since their founding in 1921. The prayer service and open house were held in conjunction with National Catholic Sisters’ Week. Marcia Harrer was a greeter and Gerry Dorobish and her great nieces handled registration and door prizes. Bonnie Balas, Joan Bridges and Mark Jesko attended to celebrate with the Sisters.
The Mon Valley Deanery Day of Recollection was held on March 15 at St. John the Baptist Church in Scottdale, PA. Fr. Stephen Wahal presented a very enlightening topic “Father Forgive Us.” Marcia Harrer, Bonnie Balas, Bernadette Karoffa and Genevieve Marszal were among the GCU members in attendance.
The Lodge 81 quarterly meeting held on February 9 focused on the upcoming Egg Eggstravaganza as well as upcoming donations. Let it be known that Lodge 81 members and St. John parishioners were eagerly preparing for the 15th Egg EGGStravaganza, which unfortunately had to be cancelled due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus. All other parish services and activities were cancelled as well. Lodge 81 will keep in prayer ALL affected at this serious time.
Bonnie Balas | Vice President & Publicity