What is not to like about the annual St. Ann Progressive Dinner? I found that thought running in my head, as I made the “long” trek home from the final stop for desserts (the parish center) to my room. If you had the chance to partake this year, you know what a treat it always is. Like SPRENKE time, we have the chance to spend time with some of those people from ‘the other masses’ at St. Ann, or from our ‘own’ masses, but who sit on the other side of the church and go out the other doors. And then the chance to meet some of the new school families. And some of those ‘younger parishioners.’

Did I mention the food? Appetizers to make the mouth water and to tempt the stomach to become full even BEFORE the second stop for the main course. People gathering for dessert asking: “What did you make? Or what did you eat?” It is an entire evening spent sharing recipes and stories and laughter and connection. It is no wonder that one of Jesus’ favorite images of heaven is that of a banquet. Thanks again, to Dana Aubuchon and SAPO for all their work in organizing such a wonderful foretaste of the kingdom. Thanks to all who opened their houses for appetizers or main courses. And for all those who closed down the parish center and locked the doors behind them. (I was well asleep by then.) And if you didn’t partake this year, then make plans for next year. You will be glad that you did.

On a different note, let me take this opportunity during Catholic Schools Week to say what a remarkable school we have here at St. Ann’s. Many of you know firsthand, because you have children enrolled here, what a talented and gifted faculty we have. And what a diverse student body we have. During the open house this past Sunday there was a moment when my mind took a mental ‘snapshot’. And what I saw in that ‘picture’ was this amazing environment where students cared for one another, where faculty were involved in meaningful conversations with student and parent ambassadors alike, where children and parents from very diverse backgrounds didn’t even notice that there was a difference. We’re just all St. Ann folk, walking the path of life together, supporting and challenging and growing together.

And somewhere up in heaven, Anne Lucas Hunt was smiling with great pride in the community of faith she began 156 years ago!