On March 18, the day before the feast day of St. Joseph, the community room on 3-East in Our Lady of the Angels Care Center in Chicago, IL, was transformed into a beautiful bakery snack shop, complete with a lovely shrine to St. Joseph at one end of the room that included a statue, candles, and flowers atop a piano covered with an elegant golden cloth.
Tables for four were scattered around half of the room, awaiting customers the next morning. Spring flowers bloomed everywhere–many of them live. Three large serving tables awaited the bakery goods and coffee service that would arrive the next morning.
As the sun was coming up on the feast day itself, OLA’s Enrichment Coordinator SM Corinne Wrobel–with the help of Administrative Assistant Zenobia Wierzbicka–brought the bakery goods up from storage and arranged the cakes, cookies, and other luscious pastries on the tables. Some were whole, some cut into individual tempting slices.
Several sisters who were stationed outside the room collected donation money and sold raffle tickets for prizes displayed there. All donations were destined for the Felician Mission in Tanzania, Africa.
According to S Carole Mary Capoun, a display with information about the newest of the Felician missions was also posted there.
The first sisters sent to Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania on December, 2013, were:
S Rosemary Wanjuki Njerum, nursery school director
SM Anastasia Gicuku Nyagam, religion teacher
SM Milena Pociask, assistant pre-school teacher
When the St. Joseph Table “Bakery Snack Shop” opened at 10 a.m. on March 19, “customers” filled the room for several hours: sisters from Mother of Good Counsel and OLA Convents, some wheelchair- bound and walker-dependent, along with housekeepers, food service workers, cooks, receptionists, maintenance workers, nurses, CNA’s, and staff from Felician Services, Inc.
Happy greetings and conversations filled the room as workers spent their break time there and sisters became acquainted with people from different parts of the central convent.
In fact, this activity was not “open to the public.” All who participated, either by providing items for the Table, or by buying and eating them, were folks who lived at or worked at the MGC central convent. Sister Carole noted, “There were four exceptions: Felician Friends Associate Mercedes Mann and her husband, Bill (the baker) Piet, and the Bianks: prayer associate Ricki and her husband Bill.”
Amazingly, from this small group of little more than 100 people who attended the St. Joseph Table, more than $1,000 was collected for the Felician Sisters in Tanzania. At the end of Lent, this amount will be added to the amount collected in the Lenten Almsgiving Collection this year, and will be sent to the sisters in Tanzania for their ministry there.