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Tottenville History

Summer 2012 #2 OLHC

Our Lady Help of Christians parish, founded in 1898, was active even prior to its founding.  In 1890, a house on Yetman & Craig Avenues was the site of the first Mass in Tottenville.  At the Centennial Mass in 1998, Cardinal O’Connor used that very same silver chalice from that first Mass.
With respect for the past, and hope for the future, the parish of Our Lady Help of Christians continues to be an integral part in the lives of its parishioners.  In the true sense of community, the parish holds an annual picnic on the Sunday closest to the May 24th feast day of Our Lady Help of Christians.       
What I find particularly important about this annual celebration is the tradition of the entire community gathered to socialize, catch up with each other, and continue the religious significance of Jesus having us break bread together.
There’s something very down to earth when that bread holds hot dogs, burgers, or sandwiches,
 since it touches the very practical application of the scriptures in our everyday lives.
 “They will know we are Christians by our love,” applies with the loving work of the volunteers, the observance of the children in their Communion outfits at the May Crowning, and the laughter of the children and adults alike at the games, rides, and other activities.
Personally, this has become a tradition for my grandson and me.  
Having been away on vacation on Mother’s Day this year, I had my family gather on May 20th as our Mother’s Day celebration this year.  (Hallmark does not determine for me when our family can celebrate.)
As my kids cleaned up the yard and fired up the grill, my grandson Gino and I snuck out to go up to OLHC not to miss the time together there.
This year I witnessed the past and future come together.  My son Joe went through OLHC grammar school in class with John Ruggeri. After the picnic this year, Gino came running into my yard to tell Uncle Joe how he made new friends at the Feast Day Picnic with John’s daughters.
Yes, traditions of the past carry forward to hope for the future!
More Information:
History of feast ofOur Lady Help of Christians

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