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Arts & Entertainment

St. Benedict Foundation Fundraiser held at Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve

Shirley McMarlin
| Monday, Aug. 8, 2011

Imagine being given the opportunity to study in Rome. A Saturday evening "Sunset at the Barn," hosted by the St. Benedict Education Foundation at the Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve in Unity, will help with that.

But the students won't be your typical university students eager to experience the food, art and history of the Eternal City. They will be monks and nuns from poor monasteries, mainly from Third World countries but also from the United States; and they will be studying at Sant' Anselmo, the international Benedictine university in Rome.

Archabbot Douglas Nowicki said theological study at Sant' Anselmo will aid the Benedictine students in their mission of ministering to the poor through education in orphanages and schools and also through pastoral care and medical and social services.

Earlier rain had departed in time for guests to partake of an outdoor Mass on the lush reserve grounds. They then moved to a stone patio below the barn for a reception and silent auction. Mood music was provided by attorney and saxophonist James Boggs.

Among those present were Father Benoit Alloggia, the foundation president, and Brother Norman Hipps, president of St. Vincent College.

Seen at the barn: John and Patricia Spisso, Dr. Richard and Johnette Seecof, Michael and Carolyn Backus, Jack and MaryAnn Cherubini (Jack dances a mean tarantella!), Karl and Carmen Eisaman, Paul and Debbie Whiteside, Angelo and Pam DeMezza, Jim and Maureen Laffey and Marc and Lisa Poole.

Also, Bernadette Dominic, Marilyn Schwing, Chuck and Nancy Anderson, Carmen and Paula Pedicone, David and Marie Gallatin, Brother Benedict Janecko, John and M alinda Sherid, Richard and Joanna Stillwagon, Paul and Donna Uhrinek, Terry Graft and L inda Brown.

Summer at St. Vincent

August is an exciting time to be at St. Vincent College, say students Sara Berger and Ciara Moran.

You might see Mewelde Moore, walking toward his dorm talking on a cell phone, or run into James Farrior, who is "very nice and respectful," Berger said Saturday, after "Taking Steps" at St. Vincent Summer Theatre. "It's fun seeing them around campus."

The two enjoy their jobs at the theatre's after-show cabaret at the Unity campus.

It was beautiful and balmy, and Berger and Moran smiled and chatted with customers like Donita Sanders of Level Green, there with her husband, Jack.

"We've been coming for years and years and years," Donita said. "It's fun to see the comedies."

Anita Hauser of Latrobe with her husband, Dan, and friends Tom and Anita Baker, said the acting was terrific, adding "it's just a fun night out."

The simple fare, flickering candles, red-checkered tables and blue folding chairs started with theatre founder Father Tom Devereux, who began hosting the cabarets in 1970.

It was Benedictine hospitality to Devereux, to give patrons a place to relax and get a hot dog before the ride home, and to this day, the operation exists on donations.

Some students working the grill or serving were Gouled Miganeh, Chris Brown, Andrew Harvey and Patricia Allan and manager was Lauren Spang.

Cabaret entertainment was by Aaron Gray on piano, with soloists Lauren Donahue and Danielle Byrne.

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