Newsletter - November 2016

posted Nov 14, 2016, 4:29 AM by Maryann Stradczuk

Hello Ladies!

This has been a really great time to be a Columbiette!  Many of us participated in the Foxwoods Bingo fundraiser.  What fun!  It took a minute for some of us to figure out what we were doing, but our friends helped us out and it was really fun.  We talked at the meeting about running this once or twice a year.  I think we can grow this into a pretty profitable endeavor.


I have been having trouble with my account and will discontinue using it.  Your e-mail would look like it goes through, but I may never see it.  Please remove it and use my account.  Thanks!


The Snowflake Parade is this Sunday, 11/20.  Columbiettes will not be marching as a group this year, but we will be helping with the St. Mary Food Pantry float.  If you can help build it, please contact Becky Jusseaume.  The idea is to have a Christmas box on the trailer to collect food for the food pantry.  We will need a few members to walk and collect food to be put in the box.  Becky has already called the box spot as she has an ankle issue this year and cannot walk.  Marchers will meet at the old Wire Wynd grounds.  The parade starts at 2:00pm.  This is a wonderful, local event!  Please coordinate through Becky Jusseaume.


On Saturday, Therese Garguis and Marie Atieh went with me to Fairfield for the Connecticut State Columbiettes Regional Meeting.  We had a really good time!  The Regional Meeting brings information about State goings on to the membership.  We also had a speaker from St. Catherine Academy, a state-approved Catholic special education school in Fairfield; serving students impacted by autism, intellectual, and developmental disabilities.  Gail Mikolsky (my friend and Sister Columbiette) was chosen by God to lead this wonderful school and her presentation was loved by all.


As many of our events include food, we need another member or two to be certified Serv Safe.  It’s a one day class.  This is not only a legal requirement, it makes good sense.  Jo Ann Rowley has volunteered for this.  Would you like to join her?  Columbiettes will pay any costs involved.


Adams Restaurant Supply has sold our commercial dishwasher!  It was a really wonderful idea that we just couldn’t make work for us.  We continue to move forward.  The money has been returned to our Small Fund.


I had the joy of giving a homeless woman in Norwich one of our Mats for the Homeless!  It was a wonderful experience for me and she thought the mat was beautiful.  We will have work nights for this in the new year.


Plans are coming along for the Handicapped Ramp to the Church Hall.  We may have drawings in a month or so.  We are so grateful to Paul Morin for all of his hard work!


The 48 new chairs are in and the hall is now set up with all new chairs and new tables.  It looks so nice!!!  Our hard work is really showing!


The Fr. Misgivings Comedy Show was a great success!  We had loads of fun!  Special thanks to the Confirmation students for selling the food for us.  The new popcorn machine was a huge hit as well.  Dave Kane, the comedian, also offers a program called 41 Signs of Hope talking about the love of God he receives through his son who was killed in The Station night club fire.  He does not charge for this presentation and I will schedule this after Christmas. 


Fr. Steve did a fantastic job with the Day of Reflection.  He told us stories about some contemporary saints that we may not have known about.  The great thing about the saints is that they are just like us; faults and all.  And if that wasn’t enough, Fr. Steve answered our questions and explained to us things that we hadn’t understood before; tough topics like divorce and gay marriage.  Some of the topics were confusing, and some were hard to hear.  Fr. Steve cleared things right up for us to help us find a way forward.  Thank you!


Most of you have seen the bracelet I have from last year’s convention.  It looks like an Alex & Ani bracelet, but has a Columbiette charm on it with an angel wing.  If you like this type of bracelet, there will be a few available soon.  If you want one, I can pick it up for you.  Please get me a check written to Columbiettes (or cash) for $20. 


Our Foundation donated $75 to the Haitian Health Foundation for hurricane relief.  Dr. Jeremiah Lowney has done a marvelous job of helping people in Haiti in a most efficient and caring way and 97% of all donations go to Haiti.  We know our money is well spent.  If you are thinking of donating, Haitian Health Foundation is worthy of our trust.


Our next First Degree will be our 4th anniversary celebration on December 4th .  Our anniversary is always the perfect time to join and a lovely time to celebrate our vibrant group!  Please ask your pew buddies if they are interested in joining our merry band of ladies!  We will start out at the 11:00 mass.  As usual, we will sit together with our families at mass.  We will then have pot luck lunch with our families in the Church Hall.  Please make a dish to share.  The First Degree will start at 1:15pm.  Hopefully the candidates will be able to attend the entire event.  If not, they can arrive at 1:00pm.  Please let me know if you and your family are attending so I can have a clue about numbers.  Traci Edwards will be our lector.  Eucharistic Ministers will be Paula Nowakowski, Donna Coombs, Dottie Rex, and myself.  We need one more.The Degree Team will be Vicki Rosich, Becky Jusseaume, Ann Olewnik, Jo Ann Rowley, Donna Coombs, Kathy Kral, and Alex Kral. 


The Living Rosary was a great success and the best one yet.  Cheryl Morin and Donna Coombs organized this event with the cooperation of Religious Education and many Columbiettes.  Thanks to all who are helping bring the rosary to our young people. 


The next Major Degree Ceremony will be held on April 22nd.  Arrangements are being made to have it in Old Saybrook.  If that falls through, the ceremony will be held here at St. Mary’s.  Once again our Sister Columbiettes from Rhode Island will be invited.  It is nice to have the Major Degree closer to home! 


All of these events appear on the calendar on our website. 


Connecticut Columbiettes are once again sponsoring the 30 Week Club.  The cost is just $30.  So far Jo Ann Rowley, Kathy Kral, Yolande Tice and I are in!  I have won the weekly drawing a couple of times and our Auxiliary won the $500 drawing two years ago.  There’s room for you, too!  Let me know as soon as possible as the drawings will begin soon.


The semi-annual audit will take place in December.  Karen Aubin and I will join Kathy Brophy for the audit. 


We voted to donate $200 to the St. Mary Food Pantry. 


Jackie Goddard is home now and would appreciate visitors.  Let’s see what we can do to brighten her day!


As a reminder, the following members without e-mail have been adopted by the person listed with them.  I do mail out the newsletter, but please call your adoptee for any events that come up along the way.  Thanks so much!  E-mail is a great form of communication for all of us who have it, but we certainly want to include these valuable members. 

  • Jackie Connelly – Ceil Roberge

  • Kathy Luty – Vicki Rosich

  • Glenda Marion – Vicki Rosich

  • Rosemary Robitaille – Claire Hull

  • Joanne Belisle – Becky Jusseaume

  • Ann Leffler – Dottie Rex

  • Kristi Surratt (nights & weekends) – Maryann Stradczuk

  • Tara Ingraham – Leona Minski

  • Malanie Cardoza – Ann Olewnik

  • Linda Demanuel – Teresa Brown

  • Jackie Goddard – Renee Asmar

  • Therese Garguis – Terri Craig


    Our next meeting will be December 5th at 6:30pm in the Church Hall.  Social Hour begins at 5:30.  Divine Mercy is in the Chapel at 5:00. 



  •  Maryann


    Christmas Bazaar information


    Final preparations continue for the Christmas Bazaar (11/19).  I always have a wonderful time working with all of you on Christmas Bazaar!!    


    We have 100 new lawn signs for the Christmas Bazaar!  In an effort to avoid spending money on them each year, they say:  Christmas Bazaar, St. Mary Church Hall, 34 North Main St, Jewett City, This Saturday 9am-3pm.  Many of you took some while at the meeting.  We have about 25 left.  If you can take some, please contact Jo Ann Rowley.  All of the lawn signs should be put out today for maximum effect and removed Saturday (11/19) after the Bazaar.  Be sure you have permission to put the signs out so we don’t offend anyone.  And remember where they are so we don’t leave any out there.  I think these will be a great addition to the promotion of this event that we spend so much time making great!  Jo Ann has also ordered Event Parking lawn signs so people will know to park behind the school for any event.  We just keep getting better and better!


  • If you are knitting or crocheting for the Craft Table, please contact Patty Martinell. 

  • If you are baking Christmas cookies this month, please bake some extra for our Bake Sale.  We are hoping to capture the “impulse buy” for baked goods and offer items that patrons can walk around with such as cookies, brownies, muffins, or cupcakes.  This year Adrianna will be joined by Gennaro to run our Bake Sale.  With our cuteness factor being over the top, we should really do well on bake sale.  Please bake to make this a success!

  • Linda Champagne and Donna Coombs have volunteered to prepare food.  Wanna help?  This will happen on Friday after the basic setup – probably toward evening.  Our menu includes baked potatoes with your choice of cheese, bacon, sour cream, chives, broccoli, chili, or butter.  You can also have chili bowl, corn chowder (yes, like last year’s that sold out), or hot dogs.  Kathy Kral is making the chili.  Sue Haulotte is making the corn chowder.   Jo Ann Rowley is buying the potatoes, and Kathy Kral has volunteered to buy the rest of the food.   

  • We will be setting up on Friday beginning at 11:00am.  Whenever you are available after that, please come by.  I expect that we will be there right into the evening.  Your bit of time can make a big difference!  Once the tables are set up, we will begin setting up our various booths.  Vendors who are Columbiettes are also welcome to set up their tables on Friday.  Food prep will be done on Friday as well, probably in the evening. 

  • Debbie Shaffer has donated a Christmas tree to help decorate our event.  Donna Coombs will be picking it up.  Rosie Payne has also donated a tree for decoration.  We will be very fancy this year!

  • This year we are having a welcome table.  Everyone will receive a Christmas Bazaar flyer and a door prize ticket.  We will also have information available about Columbiettes and (hopefully) Knights of Columbus.  Would anyone be interested in working the welcome table?

  • Cheryl Morin and Kathy Brophy have volunteered to be in charge of the end of the Silent Auction.  This is a very busy time of people wanting to pay for their treasures and take them home – all at the same time.  It will be nice to have someone who is not exhausted trying to take care of this important job!

  • Kathy Kral is procuring cash for change for all of the Columbiette booths.  I do believe we are short on cash boxes, though.  If you have one that you can bring, please let me know.

  • Kristi Surratt is getting balloons to put out the day of


    I know there’s more, but I can’t remember.  Thanks for all you do to make this event such a success year after year!


  •  Maryann