Newsletter - February 2017

posted Feb 20, 2017, 12:30 PM by Maryann Stradczuk

Hello Ladies!

Most of you know that our Sister Columbiette, Paula Nowakowski, had a total knee replacement on February 8th.  This is a very hard surgery with a long and painful recovery.  In Paula’s case, it is made more difficult as she is responsible for the care of her mother (and our Sister Columbiette), Betty Nowakowski.  Both ladies are in dire need of our help.  I have always said that one of the best things we do as Columbiettes is to support one another.  Paula really needs our help.  Visiting is nice.  Helping out is even nicer.  Some of the things I think would be welcome are:  bringing a meal, taking Paula’s grocery list to the store, driving her to an appointment, or doing the dishes or laundry.  It’s hard to do pretty much anything when you are using a walker and every movement is painful, so any help would be welcome.  Keep in mind, she will probably not be fully functional for a month or two at least.  I know some of you have visited, and Paula is very grateful for any assistance we can give.  Her address is 371 Edmond Road in Griswold.  You can also call (860-376-4993 or 860-639-8558) or email (


Plans for the New Church Hall Entry are going along well.  We are meeting with surveyors to work with the architect and ensure that we are able to mitigate any water issues.  It all takes time.  I brought copies of the current plan to the meeting for everyone to see.  I plan to have some at this month’s meeting as well, so ask me if you are interested in seeing it.  We will soon be looking for donations from parishioners to hopefully be able to complete this project this year.


It seemed like everyone who went to the Epiphany Dinner in January had a great time!  I was able to chat with some people who I haven’t seen in a while.  And isn’t that what it’s all about?  Columbiettes set up the hall and I fielded many compliments on our behalf.  The Church Hall really did look great!!


The Pro-Life Baby Shower is Sunday, March 12th @2:00pm.  This event is a standard issue baby shower that benefits The Cradle Fund.   Last year’s shower was so much fun we decided to do it again!  Car seats cannot be accepted, but any cash that is donated to this will go toward the purchase of gift cards for the purchase of car seats for disadvantaged families.  So far we have three car seats!  The Cradle Fund is looking for children’s clothes up to size 2.  Diapers and other items are also welcome.  The committee (Cheryl Morin, Donna Coombs, Sue Haulotte, Jo Ann Rowley, Linda Champagne, and Kristi Surratt) is meeting Wednesday, February 22nd @6:00pm in the Parish Center.  Feel free to join them, if you are interested in helping out. 


There is only one student from St. Mary’s going to Steubenville East this year and we voted at the meeting to pay for the balance of her costs after the Church paid a part of it.  Steubenville East is a wonderful teen rally that we have been supporting for a few years now. 


The Griswold Youth Center is sponsoring a Community Yard Sale on April 8th.  $10 buys you a space at Veteran’s Memorial Park.  Vicki Rosich, in her role as Yard Sale Chairperson, would like for Columbiettes to have a spot.  I’m all for it!  We will bring our banner and some of our stuff.  It will be good exposure for us and an opportunity to spread the good news of our group.


We discussed the purchase of white robes to be used for our First Degree Ceremonies.  Jo Ann Rowley and I have purchased our own, but the rest of the robes that we are using are pretty shabby and mismatched.  Linda Champagne works at the college and has some knowledge of these things.  She is looking into options and will bring some information to the March meeting.  Our next First Degree will be April 9th.


A change in my work schedule is causing a change in the date of the Christmas Bazaar.  The new date will be Saturday, November 18th.  Lisa Lavado has approved this message and I have changed our website calendar and page.  Sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.


The change in my work schedule is also causing a change in the date for the Ladies Tea, which will now be April 29th.  This keeps our event away from Mother’s Day, which some members thought was a good idea.  The next meeting of the Ladies Tea Committee will be Friday, April 7th in the Church Hall.  We will take inventory of items needed and finalize plans. 


This year’s anniversary celebration will be Sunday, December 10th at the 11:00 mass.  We will be celebrating the 5th anniversary of our founding!  We were thinking of having breakfast together instead of the usual lunch.  I know it’s early, but please mark your calendars.  It is so nice when we are able to get together with our families as well.


We will be putting together a Nominating Committee to bring nominations for new officers to the April meeting.  The Nominating Committee will be evaluating candidates for our six officers for the 2017-2018 year.  Nominations can also be brought from the floor at the May meeting.  Please pray upon whether you would like to be an officer.  Any Major Degree member can hold office, and if you’re not already a Major Degree Member, we can remedy that.  The current officers and I can tell you how very much fun being an officer is!  Our Auxiliary cannot exist without officers, so please consider this important job.  Now that we are established and stable, I believe that some change would be good for our vibrancy.


This year’s Major Degree Ceremony will be Saturday, April 22nd in Old Saybrook.  This is a lot closer than usual and Rhode Island Columbiettes are invited as well as Columbiettes from around Connecticut.   If you have just made your First Degree, please consider Major Degree.  I like to be at the top of my game in all regards, and this is it.  Knights of Columbus have four degrees; Columbiettes have only two.  Major Degree members have some privileges that First Degree members do not and all Columbiettes are encouraged to become Major Degree members. 


Our next meeting is Monday, March 6th at 6:30pm in the Church Hall.  Social Hour begins at 5:30.  If you are interested in attending Divine Mercy Chaplet, go to the Parish Center Chapel at 5:00pm.  All of this information is on our website –  Thanks for all you do to make our group great!



  •  Maryann