Lodge 81 June News
Spring was a very busy time for parish and community activities at Lodge 81 activities.
The highlight of Lodge 81’s spring actvities was the 14th Egg EggStravaganza held on Sunday, April 7 at St. John Social Hall. Members and parishioners worked long and hard planning and preparing for this annual event which attracts many people. Janet & George Gaydos, Helen Ponzurick, Marcia & Richard Harrer, Stephen Petruska, Ann Kormanik, Gerry Dorobish, Julie Pillar, James Mihalko and Bonnie Balas volunteered for their usual roles. Many parishioners also helped at the event selling crafts, baked goods, fundraising tickets, preparing food, and donating prizes & baked goods which help to make this event such a success. As always, the artists displaying and selling their unique egg art were a big attraction. Members from other GCU also pitched in to help including Paul Rubish and his sons, Paul Andrew and Thomas. Lodge 81 will receive Matching Funds which will go toward parish renovations. Many thanks to the Home Office for packets of jellybeans and freebies for the children.
Palm Sunday, April 14, marked First Reconciliation for the 2nd Grade ECF students Steven Popson, Lucas Mihalko, Lauren Coldren and Riley Denny. With Marcia Harrer as ECF coordinator, and Gerry Dorobish as the 2nd grade teacher, the students were well prepared. A celebration breakfast was held in their honor by the St. John Social Ministry group. As part of the breakfast April birthday recognition took place. Bonnie & Kay Balas baked mini paskas which were given to all the children in attendance.
Sunday May 5 was the final ECF class of 2019 for the parish children. Teachers Marcia Harrer, Gerry Dorobish, James Mihalko and Bonnie Balas prepared special activities for their students. Following the ECF classes a bowling/pizza party was held at Yough Lanes in Connellsville, PA. The event was sponsored by Lodge 81 for the 25+ children and parents to enjoy bowling, pizza, snacks, drinks and more. Gerry Dorobish prepared a special display of photos of the ECF program’s activities for the 2018-19 year.
To celebrate Mother’s Day on Sunday May 12, the men of the parish provided a breakfast for the women, in conjunction with the monthly May birthday recognition. The breakfast was well attended and enjoyed by all. Stephen Petruska helped in the kitchen and with clean up. Bonnie Balas and Cathy Phillips helped with set up, decorating, and passing out gifts. Helen Ponzurick was specially recognized as a birthday celebrant of 92 years.
During Great and Holy Week Bonnie Balas volunteered at Mount St. Macrina manor helping the residents decorate an Easter craft, bake paskas, and color/dye Easter eggs. In addition, Gerry Dorobish continued her help at the Mt. Macrina Religious Gift Shop.
On Wednesday, May 1, a Reading Competition for Middle School students from local school districts was held in the classrooms at St. John School. This program is sponsored by the Uniontown Public Library. Stephen Petruska, who works at the library, was involved in arranging and setting up the classrooms, while Gerry Dorobish served as a moderator for one of the reading groups.
The weekend of May 17 marked the 25th Anniversary of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. A celebration was held at the Cultural Center in Munhall, PA. Janet Gaydos and Bonnie Balas (both GCU members) with parishioners Joan Opachko Bridges and Mark Jesko, attended the performance of Slavjane Folk Ensemble and the Harmonia Band. Bonnie and Mark also attended the lecture on Rusyn wooden churches presented by Dr. Michele Parvensky.
At the quarterly meeting held on May 19, plans were made to attend and donate to the Join Hands Day at Mount St. Macrina on June 1. A donation was made to St. John Church for use of the meeting room. Plans were discussed for the annual Flag Day/Veteran Recognition Program to be held on Sunday, June 9 after the 9 AM Divine Liturgy. The next quarterly meeting is planned for Sunday, August 18, after the Sunday Divine Liturgy.