Sunday, March 29, 2009

Bake sale at the Nativity of the Mother of God (St. Mary’s) in Toronto

The traditional and much awaited bake sale at Shaw St on March 29th did not start off great. Since Saturday was a beautiful day, full of sunshine, everyone expected the same to carry over to Sunday. When we woke up Sunday morning and encountered cloudy skies, we still held out hope that the sun will poke through. Unfortunately, the sun decided to shine somewhere else. The morning started with a few rain drops and as the time went on, it began to rain more and more. By the time parishioners and guests arrived at church for the 10 o’clock liturgy, the rain was coming down pretty good. The parish ladies who brought their famous cakes and cookies, rushed in covering the baking with their umbrellas. They must have covered everything well because there was no sign of raindrops on any of the cakes.

The day started with a liturgy celebrated by Fr. Andrew Kormanik, the pastor. The first half of the liturgy was in English and the second half in Slovak. For some of the guests it may have seemed that the liturgy was a bit too long; in fact, the liturgy was longer than normal due to the special prayers that are recited during lent. The most interesting part of the liturgy is always Fr. Andrew’s homily. He speaks from the heart, always refers to the Gospel and makes a connection to real life. This way, everyone understands what the Gospel reading was all about and it stays with us all week.

Following the liturgy, all were invited downstairs to the hall for lunch and to buy the goodies. A few weeks before the sale, the Women’s Auxiliary ladies gathered in the hall and made pirohy: some were made with potato and cheese, others with sauerkraut. They also met Friday and Saturday immediately before the sale to make dozens and dozens of cabbage rolls. Then one by one, Sunday morning, the ladies brought their special cakes: cheese cakes, honey cakes, rozky, babovky, fruit cakes, and even some paschas for Easter. There were also some knedle for sale as well as cheese balls. It was not long before parishioners and guests returned to their tables and it was time for lunch. Fr. Andrew led us in “Our Father” and asked the Lord to bless the food and the hands that prepared it. The ladies in the kitchen outdid themselves again: they prepared an absolutely delicious gulash and served it with potatoes, vegetables, a side order of salad and a slice of bread. That was followed by a serving of carrot cake and coffee. And just to raise a little more for the Women's Auxiliary, everyone had a chance to buy a ticket or two for a 50/50 draw!

Even though the day started off with some rain, by the time everything finished, the sun did shine and everyone was able to carry out their purchases without worrying about getting wet. It was a very successful bake sale and the nice thing about all this was everyone’s cooperation. It warms the heart when you see the young and the not so young working together towards a common goal: the good of our church and making sure that it continues to flourish. Thank you to all the ladies who prepared, baked and cleaned. A special thank you to all parishioners and guests who bought baked goods, luncheon tickets and draw tickets. You all contributed to a worthy cause. May God bless you and keep you. Wishing you all a Blessed Easter!

Christos Voskrese! Voistinu Voskrese! Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!

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Text and photos by: Mary Siroky-Snell

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