of Holy Cross annual dinner
Sunday, February 12th will mark another year for the St. Mary's/Holy Cross Annual Dinner. This fundraiser for the parish has quite a lengthy history. In fact, after researching the exact year the Holy Cross Dinner began, some interesting facts arose. The Holy Cross tradition of hosting an annual event began initially when parishoners used to hold an annual bazaar.
Eventually, the bazaar ceased and was replaced by a parish dinner years later when the church needed a finanacial boost. The Christian Mothers and the Holy Names Society decided a parish dinner may be the answer, and the Christian Mothers agreed to spearhead the event. The first of many parish dinners was held on February 19, 1978. Vivia Enneking, who was president of the Christian Mothers that year, along with the other officers: Kaye Uptmor, Anna Gehring, and Nora Gehring, rose to the challenge of putting together a successful fundraiser. That first year was exciting, not only because it was the first year, but also because the transformer kept going out at the hall. In fact, the day of the dinner, the hall was without power for about one and a half hours. Subsequently, the potatoes ended up being cooked in the Keuterville priest's garage, and the power company had to be called out to fix this "power emergency". If you were one of the 700 people who ate at the dinner that year, you may not have been aware of all of the behind-the-scenes excitement.
No matter the circumstances of that first year, it was deemed a success and has since been followed by many years of this family-friendly annual event. In 1998, St. Mary's and Holy Cross became one parish and have been working conjointly on this fundraising event ever since. Each February, we are able to enjoy a day in Keuterville, complete with a hearty dinner, bingo, a raffle, and, most importantly, good company.
This year's proceeds from the dinner will go towards a new roof for the Holy Cross Church. No one can deny the beauty and character of this historical landmark. Although the church is now used mostly for funerals, weddings, and some special masses said during the week, this big, beautiful church hosts many fond and sacred memories for parishoners. The love for this grand old church, which was re-constructed in the autumn of 1911 after a fire, is unmistakable. Holy Cross retains its dignity and purpose despite no longer being an "operating" parish.
Hopefully, many of you will choose to take a little drive up Keuterville way this coming Sunday and take the opportunity to take a closer look at this beautiful and historic church while also getting to enjoy the tradition of friends and neighbors coming together to host a delicious homecooked dinner, bingo, and raffle.